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Does Margarine Kill Turkeys? Answers to This and Other Margarine Myths

Margarine myths or facts? Find out the truth about margarine killing turkeys, being one molecule away from plastic, having added colors and more.

Misinformation never dies on the internet – it just gets turned into another Facebook meme that gets shared over a million times. Today's case in point – margarine myths. I am not a fan of margarine. I think it's a sad excuse for butter, and always has been. That said, the whackadoo information and fearmongering being shared on the internet is just plain silly. If you're going to avoid bad food, do it for legitimate reasons. There are plenty of them.

In this post I'll present some margarine myths and the real problems with margarine.

Margarine Myth #1 – Margarine Kills Turkeys

Here's the internet margarine myth:

Margarine was originally manufactured to fatten turkeys. When it killed the turkeys, the people who had put all the money into the research wanted a payback so they put their heads together to figure out what to do with this product to get their money back.

THIS IS FALSE – Margarine was invented in France by Hippolyte Mege-Mouriezas a cheap butter alternative to feed Napolean's troops back in 1869. The original formula was based on beef tallow and milk in combination with margaric acid, and was called oleo-margarine. Current margarine products are made with vegetable oil blends.

To the best of my knowledge, no turkeys have been directly killed by margarine, however, consuming large amounts of margarine may reduce turkey lifespans and overall health. (See transfat concerns below.) Alternatively, if a case of margarine landed on a turkey, that might lead to the turkey's demise.

Margarine myths or facts? Find out the truth about margarine killing turkeys, being one molecule away from plastic, having added colors and more.

Margarine Myth #2 – Margarine is but ONE MOLECULE away from being PLASTIC… and shares 27 ingredients with PAINT

Here's the internet margarine myth:

Margarine is but ONE MOLECULE away from being PLASTIC… and shares 27 ingredients with PAINT.

These facts alone were enough to have me avoiding margarine for life and anything else that is hydrogenated (this means hydrogen is added, changing the molecular structure of the substance).

Open a tub of margarine and leave it open in your garage or shaded area. Within a couple of days you will notice a couple of things:

* no flies, not even those pesky fruit flies will go near it (that should tell you something)

* it does not rot or smell differently because it has no nutritional value ; nothing will grow on it. Even those teeny weeny microorganisms will not a find a home to grow.

Why? Because it is nearly plastic . Would you melt your Tupperware and spread that on your toast?

FALSE – well, not just false, more like completely nonsensical. It's like saying apples are one fruit away from an orange because they both grow on trees.

As for the paint comment, which margarine and which paint? Ingredients can be used for more than one purpose. I may mix up a batch of weed killer out of concentrated vinegar that gets rid of weeds in the sidewalk cracks, but that doesn't mean I can't use the same vinegar to make a batch of pickles.

What's the Difference Between Butter and Margarine?

Both margarine and plastic contain hydrocarbons. Hydrocarbons are organic compounds that are made of only hydrogen and carbon atoms. Common hydrocarbons include oil and gas. That doesn't mean that foods with hydrogen and carbon atoms are dangerous.

It's all about how the atoms within the molecule are arranged. You wouldn't guzzle down a jug of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), but water (H2O) makes a refreshing beverage.

Butter is a saturated fat. This means all its carbon bonds are filled, mostly with hydrogen. While previously villainized as evil, saturated fats have been cleared of wrong doing and are essential to good health.

Margarine is made out of poly-unsaturated fats, which means that some of the carbon atoms are initially double bonded. To make these vegetable oils thick and spreadable (like butter), they use some processed food chemical magic to add more hydrogen. This is called hydrogenation. Unless you've been living under a rock, you've probably heard that hydrogenated oils (also known as transfats) are not good for you.

The video below gives a good explanation of the chemistry of butter and margarine in easy to understand terms. I don't agree with their push for veggie oil at the end, since many vegetable oils are now genetically modified and/or heavily processed, but it takes a while for the mainstream to accept new info. Personally, I recommend good quality fats (pastured animal products when you can get them and responsibly raised coconut and palm oils and olive oil) as part of a healthy diet. If I can't get grassfed (or it isn't in the budget), I go for the least processed option available.

As for the part about the flies and fruit flies won't eat margarine…

Fruit flies are attracted to fruit, not oil. Of course they don't bother margarine. I haven't tested margarine, but a while back we did a little homeschooling test with non-dairy whipped topping and real raw whipped cream. They both sat in my north window from March to October, virtually unchanged. The raw cream did attract one bug, the whipped topping attracted none.

Although I didn't taste them, I'm 99% sure the raw cream simply soured over time, which stabilized it. (Not tasty, but functional.) The whipped topping weeped out some clear liquid (likely water, because it evaporated over time) and shrunk up like a shrinky-dink toy. When I poked both products before dumping them into the compost, the cream had formed a protective crust with uniform white filling, and the whipped topping had a uniform foam texture.

Non-dairy whipped topping versus real whipped cream test.

For good measure, we also lit some whipped topping and whipped cream on fire with the kitchen torch. The whipped cream melted, the whipped topping scorched.

Non-dairy whipped topping versus real whipped cream test.

Margarine Meme Information that is True

Meme info in bold italics, comments in regular text.

Margarine is Colored

Margarine was a white substance with no food appeal so they added the yellow coloring and sold it to people to use in place of butter.

The original margarine was white (after all, it was mostly beef tallow), which did lack table appeal and so color was indeed added. Margarine was fought by dairy interests, and selling margarine was outlawed in some states – although others required that margarine be dyed pink to make sure it wasn't passed off as butter. Some people took to mixing colors into their margarine at home (white margarine was conveniently sold with a yellow dye packet). See Margarine: An Economic, Social and Scientific History, 1869-1969.

Margarine and Butter Have a Similar Amount of Calories, Margarine May Have Less Saturated Fat

Margarine and Butter Have the Same Amount of Calories

Regular and butter and margarine are both fats, and have about 100 calories per tablespoon. Funky whipped products may have less calories (and less product) in a spoonful.

Butter is slightly higher in saturated fats at 8 grams; compared to 5 grams for margarine.

See above video and comments. Butter is a saturated hydrocarbon.

Margarine is Linked to Increased Disease and an Increase in All Cause Mortality

Eating margarine can increase heart disease in women by 53% over eating the same amount of butter, according to a recent Harvard Medical Study.

This mystery study is nowhere to be found, but the article Trans fats, but not saturated fats, linked to greater risk of death and heart disease states of another recent study:

“The team found no clear association between higher intake of saturated fats and all cause mortality, coronary heart disease (CHD), cardiovascular disease (CVD), ischemic stroke or type 2 diabetes, but could not, with confidence, rule out increased risk for CHD death. They did not find evidence that diets higher in saturated fat reduce cardiovascular risk.

However, consumption of industrial trans fats was associated with a 34% increase in all cause mortality, a 28% increased risk of CHD mortality, and a 21% increase in the risk of CHD.”

Link to the featured study, by Dr. Russell J de Souza, et al:

Intake of saturated and trans unsaturated fatty acids and risk of all cause mortality, cardiovascular disease, and type 2 diabetes: systematic review and meta-analysis of observational studies

Related transfat research studies by Dr. DiNicolantonio:

The cardiometabolic consequences of replacing saturated fats with carbohydrates or Ω-6 polyunsaturated fats: Do the dietary guidelines have it wrong?

Evidence from randomised controlled trials did not support the introduction of dietary fat guidelines in 1977 and 1983: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Margarine triples risk of coronary heart disease …

Per the study by Dr. Russell J de Souza, et al, 28% increased risk of death from coronary heart disease (CHD).

Margarine is Linked to Cancer

Margarine increases the risk of cancers up to five times..

From Margarine significantly increases your risk of developing Breast Cancer:

In 1996, Swedish researchers decided it was time for a human study to provide some hard data on breast cancer. Scientists from the Karolinska Institute recruited 63,870 women aged 40–76 and monitored their diet and the occurrence of breast cancer for an average of 4.2 years. The dietary questionnaires used in the study enabled the researchers to determine exactly how much saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fat the women were consuming.

They found no association between the total fat or saturated-fat (the dominant fat in animal fats) intake and a woman’s risk of developing breast cancer. Monounsaturated-fat (the dominant fat in Olive Oil) consumption reduced the risk of breast cancer by 20 per cent but polyunsaturated-fat consumption did exactly the opposite. Just as the rat studies had predicted, the women consuming the most polyunsaturated fat were 20 per cent more likely to develop breast cancer than the women consuming the least.

Margarine may be High in Trans Fatty Acids, Increase Cholesterol and Lower Breast Milk Quality

Margarine is very high in trans fatty acids.

It depends on the margarine, as explained in the video. Hard (stick) margarine tends to have more transfats, soft spreads generally have less.

Margarine increases total cholesterol and LDL (this is the bad cholesterol) and lowers HDL cholesterol, (the good cholesterol)

Again, it depends on the margarine, but yes, this is likely. That said, cholesterol is only one factor in health health and overall health. See “15 Home Remedies to Naturally Reduce Cholesterol and the Risk of Heart Attack” for more information.

Margarine lowers quality of breast milk

This gets back to the fatty acid balance. Margarine has omega 6 fatty acids. Most of us consume too many omega 6 fatty acids and not enough omega 3 fatty acids. If you don't have omega 3s in your diets, you won't have them in adequate quantities in your breast milk.

Margarine may affect the Immune System and Blood Sugar Regulation

Margarine decreases immune response and decreases insulin response.

From comments by Mary Enig, PhD, on trans fatty acids for the Nutrition Subcommittee of the Food Advisory Committee.

Some adverse effects of consuming trans fatty acids reported in humans and animals include the following:

  • increases blood insulin levels in humans in response to glucose load, increasing risk for diabetes;
  • interfere with the ability of new mothers to nurse successfully and increase the likelihood of developing diabetes (lowers the amount of cream by volume in milk from lactating females in all species studied, including humans, thus lowering the overall quality available to an infant);
  • predispose pregnant mothers to low-birth-weight babies;
  • causes a dose response decrease in visual acuity in infants who are fed human milk with increasing levels of trans fatty acids, which extends to 14 months of age;
  • affects immune response by lowering efficiency of B cell response and increasing proliferation of T cells;
  • decreases the response of the red blood cell to insulin, thus having a potentially undesirable effect on diabetes;
  • causes alterations in adipose cell size, cell number, lipid class, and fatty acid composition;
  • contributes to osteoporosis;
  • decreases testosterone, causes the production of abnormal sperm and altered gestation;
  • causes adverse alterations in the activities of the important enzyme system that metabolizes chemical carcinogens and drugs;
  • precipitates childhood asthma;
  • interferes with the body's use of omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oils, grains and green vegetables, leading to impaired prostaglandin production;
  • increases the incidence of heart disease because trans fatty acids lower HDL cholesterol, increase LDL and increase the heart disease marker Lipoprotein [a] (Lp[a]) while saturated fats lower Lp[a};
  • raises total serum cholesterol levels 20-30mg%; and
  • causes adverse alterations in physiological properties of biological membranes including measurements of membrane transport and membrane fluidity.

Margarine myths or facts? Find out the truth about margarine killing turkeys, being one molecule away from plastic, having added colors and more.

Butter Helps you to Absorb Nutrients and is More Nutritious

Eating butter increases the absorption of many other nutrients in other foods.

True – fat soluble vitamins such as A, D, E and K require fat to be properly absorbed and used by the body. Caveat – other quality fats will work just as well.

Butter has many nutritional benefits where margarine has a few and only because they are added!

It depends on the butter and the margarine. Grass fed butters tend to have nice bright color and higher levels of essential fatty acids, vitamins A, E and Beta-carotene. (More on this in “Better Butter“.

Butter tastes much better than margarine and it can enhance the flavors of other foods.

Purely subjective, but I much prefer butter.

Butter has been around for centuries where margarine has been around for less than 100 years .

Margarine was created in 1869, so it's been around for over 100 years, but I still trust cows more than chemists.

As you can see, the transfats in margarine and other processed foods are not a health food, even without dead turkeys and plastic being involved. Let's stick to just the facts instead of spreading misinformation!

Margarine myths or facts? Find out the truth about margarine killing turkeys, being one molecule away from plastic, having added colors and more.

Recommended Resources

This post is part of the “Common Sense Isn't So Common” series addressing misinformation on the internet.

Other posts in the series include:

Have you seen information on the internet related to health, gardening or other topics covered on the site that's just plain wrong? Leave a comment and let me know.

Originally posted in 2016, updated in 2017.

The post Does Margarine Kill Turkeys? Answers to This and Other Margarine Myths appeared first on Common Sense Homesteading.

This Article Was Originally Posted at commonsensehome.com Read The Original Article Here

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Homemade Weapons You Can DIY To Awaken Your Inner Caveman

Learn to make your own homemade weapons so you’ll have a fighting chance in a survival situation where all you have is nature.

 [You Get One FREE] Weird Little Knife Drives TSA Crazy!

How to Make Homemade Weapons

Why Should You Learn to Make Homemade Weapons?

Let’s say you got lost in the wild, and you somehow forgot or lost your Cold Steel Leatherneck Tanto 39LSFT (or whichever is the best survival knife for you). What do you do?

While your situation is most likely not quite as bad as Tom Hanks had it in Castaway, let’s face it. The only way you’re gonna get out of this situation in good shape is to let out your inner caveman.

Let me explain. Our very primitive ancestors lived in a time when every day was a survival situation. Any tools or weapons they needed had to be made from scratch.

So, should you be unlucky enough to have only the shirt on your back while you’re lost in the wilderness, you’ll have to follow suit. Let the training of your inner caveman begin.

Today’s lesson: how to make DIY weapons in the wild with only the resources nature provided you.

How to Make a Knife | Homemade Weapons

Having a knife, any kind of knife is probably one of the best things to happen should you suddenly find yourself in a survival situation. You can use it to help you find food, build a shelter, and defend yourself against wild animals.

So it’s highly fortunate nature is waiting like a momma at a craft table with lots of materials you can use to create one.

1. Stone Knives

Bone, shell, bamboo, wood, or even an old aluminum beer can may work to perform the puncturing function of a blade. You know you’ve seen these a million times when you’re out hiking.

They’re easy to crack or break or shape into a fairly sharp point which will do in a pinch. Unfortunately, you’re not going to be able to use a chicken bone or an expertly-shaped aluminum can point to skin, chop, baton, or any of the other necessary functions of a survival knife.

This is where the stone comes into play. I’ll start by saying making a knife out of stone isn’t easy, but it can be done.

You’ll need three things: a core rock, a hammerstone, and a pressure flaker. Remember, you’re going to be smashing these together in true caveman fashion.

So, having stones you can reasonably grip in each hand is going to make your life a lot easier. Although, it’s definitely an option to stand poised over one rock smashing down on it.

You, with a two-hand grip, pounding until you’ve chipped away at it a bit. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

2. The Core Rock

rock formation background | Homemade Weapons You Can DIY To Awaken Your Inner Caveman | homemade weapons | deadliest ancient weapons

The core rock is what you’ll be making into a blade. Find any large stone, preferably made from obsidian, slate, chert, or flint with a relatively flat side.

In case you weren’t a rock collector in any of your previous lives, here’s another way to decide if a rock meets the requirements for good knife-making material. Tap or click a rock together with another rock and listen for a ringing sound (like glass).

The more rock sounds like glass, the better it is as a material for your core rock. If you can, choose a rock which is already a bit sharp to reduce the amount of time you’ll need to shape it.

3. The Hammerstone

The hammerstone is a medium-sized, spherical rock, preferably made of granite. It will be used to smash, chisel, chip and shape the core rock.

You’ll be using it to chip off pieces of the core stone and to narrow the edges to a blade shape.

RELATED: How To Keep Your Edge | Knife Sharpener

4. The Pressure Flaker

The pressure flaker, or flaking tool, is a rock with a sharp point to help you refine the blade’s edges. You’ll use your flaking tool after you’ve thinned the edges of the stone with the hammer stone to make the “blade” sharper.

When you start making your knife, you’ll want to be sure to wet the core stone to shorten the time it takes to shape it into a blade. Begin by striking glancing blows near the edge of the core rock with the hammerstone.

Chip away at the core rock until you get the general shape of a blade. Then, use the flaking tool to refine the edges you need to sharpen.

You can also use a stone with a rough surface such as a sandstone to sharpen the edge. Use some rope, cloth, or leather to lash the base and create a handle.

If you are having troubling shaping the rock into a knife, you can opt to create stone blades instead. Check out the videos below to learn how:

Part One:

Part Two:

How to Make a Spear | Homemade Weapons

south african zulu spear | Homemade Weapons You Can DIY To Awaken Your Inner Caveman | homemade weapons | deadliest ancient weapons

We’ve talked about how to make a spear using your best survival knife in a previous article. The same principle applies here.

Even without your Cold Steel Leatherneck Tanto 39LSFT or whichever survival knife you normally bring with you, you can still make a spear using your newly made stone knife. To make a spear, you’ll need to find a five-foot-long stick tough enough to endure repeated short or long-distance throws.

  1. First, pick the end of the stick which has a more rounded tip and use your stone knife to start shaving to create a spear. Once you’re done, be sure to heat the spear over some hot coals to make your spear sharper.
  2. As an alternative, you can also make a spear by tying your knife onto a stick. Find a stick which is about an inch wide.
  3. Measure about 2 inches from one end of the stick. Mark the point, then split the stick into two until you reach the 2-inch mark, creating a sort of Y shape.
  4. This will create a space where you can stick your stone knife before you lash it on with some twine, cord, or rope. To lock the blade in place, put some moss or lichen in the remaining space.
  5. If you haven’t had time to fashion your knife out of stone yet, you can also use broken pieces of shell or glass or splintered bamboo or bone and secure it to the end of your stick.
  6. If you find a way to split your stick without a knife, you can insert the splintered bone or bamboo into the wedge and tie it off like you would when turning a knife into a spear.

How to Make a Weighted Club | Homemade Weapons

While sharp pointy tools are all well and good, you can never go wrong with a blunt homemade weapon. You can use it for hammering or bludgeoning something such as a weighted club.

The weighted club could be one of the deadliest ancient weapons. To make one, you’ll need the following: a piece of wood around 14-16 inches, a medium-sized rock, and some rope.

  1. Once you have all the materials, you’ll need to wrap some lashing 6-8 inches from the end of the stick.
  2. Split the same end until you reach the lashing in order to create a V-shaped notch. The rock you picked out should be shorter than the length of the split.
  3. Insert the stone then lash it securely (above, below, and across the stone). The lashing on the stick above the stone clamps both sides of the split together providing the first point of security, so it’s especially important to create a good, tight lashing above the stone.
  4. You’ll want to make sure you bind the split ends securely so the stone won’t fall off whenever you use it to hammer or pound on something.

This video from Wannabe Bushcrafter will show you how to make a bamboo knife:

Now, hopefully, you never find yourself in a situation where making homemade weapons is going to be a necessity for survival. But, if you do find yourself in such a quagmire, this little bit of information and inner caveman training may be what saves your life.

Which of these homemade weapons do you want to make? Tell us your progress in the comments section below!

Up Next:

Go to our Survival Life Store to shop some of our favorites self-defense tools and gear!

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***Disclaimer: The contents of this article are for informational purposes only. Please read our full disclaimer.***

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on April 11, 2014, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

This Article Was First Found at survivallife.com Read The Original Article Here

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5 Home Remedies For Chigger Bites

Know these home remedies for chigger bites, or better yet, avoid the bug's bites in the first place with helpful tips included here!

RELATED: Top Ways to Deal with Insects [Especially Mosquitos]

In this article:

  1. What Is a Chigger, Exactly?
  2. Where Do Chiggers Live?
  3. Identifying Chiggers Bites
  4. Home Remedies for Chigger Bites
  5. Tips to Avoid Chigger Bites and Chigger Bites Infection

Home Remedies For Chigger Bites

What Is a Chigger, Exactly?

Chiggers are members of the arachnid family. They are extremely tiny, and my guess is you won’t even see them as they jump from the tall grass onto your skin and/or clothing.

Adult chiggers are about 1/60 of an inch and have eight legs. The larvae are red, wingless, six-legged creatures which measure less than 1/150 of an inch.

Because of their red color, you might be able to spot the larvae when they cluster together, especially on white clothing.

What Is the Arachnid Family? It is a large group or class of invertebrate animals where the spiders and scorpions belong.

Where Do Chiggers Live?

Chiggers reside in tall weeds and grass, berry patches, and wooded areas. They could be in your backyard, by the lake, or your favorite hiking trail.

They are most active in summer and fall afternoons – the warmest part of the day.

Identifying Chiggers Bites

Only the larvae bite humans and they tend to choose warm, moist areas of the body.

Chiggers also have claws which help them grab onto your skin. The chigger then attaches its mouth to the skin and injects saliva.

The saliva contains an enzyme which breaks skin cells down to liquid form. Your body responds by hardening skin cells around the saliva, creating a tube (cyclostome) through which the chigger sucks the dissolved skin cells.

Chiggers can stay attached and feeding for several days before falling off.

When the chigger falls off, you are left with reddish bumps. You may notice a bright red dot in the center—this is a remnant of the tube your skin formed in response to the chigger's saliva.

The bumps may look like welts, blisters, pimples, or hives. Bites generally appear in groups and get larger for several days to a week.

While many insects bite exposed skin which is easy to get to, chiggers like to bite in folds of skin as well as places where clothing fits tightly on the skin. Most chigger bites occur around the ankles, waist, armpits, crotch, or behind the knees.

Home Remedies for Chigger Bites

Just remember, no matter what, DO NOT SCRATCH THE BITES! I know, easier said than done. But, breaking the skin on a chigger bite can lead to infection.

Here are 5 home remedies to help with the itching and swelling.

RELATED: Spider Bite? Here’s How To Treat It

1. Vicks Vapor Rub

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Vicks Vapor Rub can put an end to itchy chigger bites immediately and will even reduce the risk of blisters. It’s the cooling menthol in it which relieves itching by affecting itch receptors in the skin.

Steps:

  • Take a hot shower (use antibacterial soap.) Pat dry your skin with a soft towel.
  • Take a small amount of the vapor rub and add some table salt to it.
  • Mix well and apply to the affected area.
  • Repeat if the swelling continues (otherwise, there is no need to repeat the process)

2. Cold Compress

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A cold compress can help reduce the itching associated with chigger bites. Its numbing effect helps reduce the sensation of itchiness.

Steps:

  • Wrap some ice cubes in a thin cloth.
  • Apply the compress to the bites for 10 minutes. Repeat if needed to relieve itching.

3. Baking Soda

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Baking soda is another effective remedy to reduce rashes as well as itchiness. It acts as a natural acid neutralizer which helps relieve itching and reduces the risk of infection.

Steps:

  • Add 1 cup of baking soda to a bathtub filled with cool water.
  • Stir well and soak in this water for 15 minutes and pat your skin with a soft towel. (Do this once daily)

Another remedy using baking soda:

  • Prepare a thin paste of 2 teaspoons of baking soda and a little water.
  • Apply the paste on the affected areas and leave it on for about 10 minutes.
  • Rinse it off with cool water.

Note: Do not use this remedy more than once or twice a day. Never use baking soda on broken skin or open wounds.

4. Oatmeal

|
Oatmeal contains anti-irritating, anti-inflammatory and soothing properties providing instant relief from itching–one of the common symptoms of chigger bites. It is recommended to use colloidal oatmeal, meaning oats which are ground into an extremely fine powder.

(You can accomplish this yourself by grinding regular oats in a sealed Ziploc bag, using the backside of a spoon to crush the oatmeal.)

Steps:

  • Add 1 cup of colloidal oatmeal to a bathtub filled with warm water
  • Stir thoroughly
  • Soak in this mixture for at least 15-20 minutes
  • Repeat 2-3 times a day

5. Olive Oil

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Olive oil can also be used to get relief from the irritation and inflammation. It is rich in vitamin E and antioxidants which reduce itching and facilitate healing.

Steps:

  • After rinsing the affected area with water, apply olive oil to the chigger bite.
  • Reapply several times a day.

Another option using olive oil:

  • Mix a few drops of tea tree oil in 1 tablespoon of olive oil and apply on the affected area.
  • Repeat a few times a day.

Tips to Avoid Chigger Bites and Chigger Bites Infection

As summer and fall are prime time for chigger bites, it is best to take the following precautions:

  1. When hiking, stay in the center of the trail and avoid brushing up against vegetation.
  2. Wear long sleeves and long pants when going into the woods.
  3. Apply mosquito repellent on your hands, feet, and exposed skin on your arms before going outside.
  4. Shower immediately after being outdoors and use antibacterial soap.
  5. Wash your clothes in hot water.
  6. Resist the urge to scratch because breaking the skin on chigger bites can lead to a possible infection.

This video from Online Pest Control will show you tips to avoid chiggers and ways to get rid of chiggers:

Chigger bites much like other insect bites aren't only discomforting, they can be dangerous too. Many of these insects including chiggers carry diseases in some cases.

The best way to deal with these bugs is to avoid them or control them with our tips here. But, if you're so unlucky, you also now know the best home remedies to chigger bites!

Have you had to deal with chigger bites before? Tell us how, including more useful tips which worked for you in the comments section below!

Up Next:

Go to our Survival Life Store to shop some of our favorites self-defense tools and gear!

Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and Tumblr!

***Disclaimer: The contents of this article are for informational purposes only. Please read our full disclaimer.***

Home Remedies For Chigger Bites | https://survivallife.com/5-home-remedies-for-chigger-bites/

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on June 28, 2016, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

This Article Was First Found at survivallife.com Read The Original Article Here

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9 Good Reasons To Carry A “Survival Stick”

Arm yourself with a survival stick, get savvy with it, but first, find out why as you read on!

RELATED: Deadly Parasols | Umbrella As A Self-Defense Weapon

In this article:

  1. Survival Hiking Stick
  2. Survival Stick for Support
  3. Fetching/Reaching Things
  4. Walking Staff Weapon for Self-Defense
  5. Balance
  6. Gauging Depth
  7. Carrying Gear and Supplies
  8. Club
  9. Fishing Rod

Survival Stick: An Underrated Multipurpose Tool?

The Survival Stick in History

A walking stick or a survival cane were popular in the 17th and 18th centuries as a decorative show of power and a defensive replacement for a sword. Yet, the truth is our ancestors have been using them for thousands of years, and for good reason…

…They work! Even the animal kingdom is smart enough to know just how useful these are:

(It may be hard to see, but this gorilla is holding a walking stick to gauge the depth of the water as she sloshes along)

A walking stick is not a new or revolutionary idea. In fact, the use of a walking stick predates history and its use continued on for generations including this present time.

Yet, it is one which is more often than not overlooked. When most people think of a walking stick, it is usually paired with a top hat or seen as a crutch for someone with a walking disability.

Far too few people even realize how important a walking stick can be, especially to someone in the outdoors. We will dig a little deeper into the many uses of a survival stick and maybe safely say, it could be the first multi-purpose survival tool.

Practical and Survival Uses for a Survival Stick

Walking sticks are also known as trekking poles, pilgrim's staffs, hiking poles and hiking staff have quite a few different uses:

1. Survival Hiking Stick

Hold the survival stick in front of you and you can use it to clear your way by parting brushes and branches or leaves and thick tall grasses. You can also use it to clear spiderwebs, especially if you're not too fond of spiders.

Other insects, animals, poisonous plants, and even animal dung can get in the way. Use a survival stick to inspect or poke at those things if you are unsure, and never ever your hands or your feet.

2. Survival Stick for Support

Hiker in Caucasus mountains is crossing mountain river | Good Reasons To Carry A "Survival Stick" | hiking staff
Making your way through an uneven terrain will be more manageable with a walking stick for support. Whether you're going up or down, use the walking stick to either slow you down or hold you up.

You can use your walking stick like breaks to keep you from speeding down or use it to latch on to a rock or crevice when you're climbing up. Besides for yourself, you can also use your multipurpose stick as a support for your tarp emergency shelter.

3. Fetching/Reaching Things

It happens–a supply or gear falling on water, mud, puddle or in an area you dare not walk into. You can fetch or reach for those items with a stick.

It also happens where you need an item over a physical barrier and only a stick can fetch the item for you. You can also reach for fruits, nest, or other food sources up a tree or high structure with a stick.

RELATED: Unusual Weapons From Around The World And How To Use Them

4. Walking Staff Weapon for Self-Defense

To use a survival stick as a weapon, make sure it's a sturdy stick with a finished look and not just any stick you found along the way. You can use it to defend yourself from an attacker whether it's human or animals.

I would suggest to train yourself in some form of martial arts using a stick like a baton as a weapon to have a better handle at it.

You can also fashion a spear with your stick by tying a survival knife on one end. Don't throw this spear though or you risk damaging or losing your knife and stick.

Hold on to your homemade spear and only use it to thrust at your target.

5. Balance

Hiker is crossing the river in Sweden | Hiker in Caucasus mountain | Good Reasons To Carry A "Survival Stick" | survival hiking stickWhen you're crossing a log bridge over a stream or you're going through the stream itself or other bodies of water, a walking stick can help you balance so you don't fall over. If you're walking through a muddy or rocky waterbed, a walking stick will help you up.

If you're up for it and if the body of water isn't too wide across, you can also use a long stick like a pole vault to cross over so you don't get yourself wet.

6. Gauging Depth

Relative to crossing bodies of water, a survival stick is handy in identifying dips beneath the waters which could cause you to stumble. You can also use the stick to identify where it's safe to take the next step.

You can also use this simple trick with the stick when you're traveling in deep snow, marshland, and even the dessert.

7. Carrying Gear and Supplies

Use your survival stick to help you carry gear and supplies. Pack your supplies with a shemagh, tie it tight to one end of your stick then place the stick over your shoulders in hobo fashion.

You can also carry more supplies with your survival stick. Even today, a carrying pole is used by indigenous people all over the world to carry heavy supplies you never thought possible.

Hang bags of supplies or jars of water on either side of the pole or stick, putting a stopper like a notch or tie on both ends so they don't fall off. Place the center of the stick over your shoulders and balance your load to your destination.

8. Club

Man carrying blue backpack | Good Reasons To Carry A "Survival Stick" | walking staff weapon
Use your survival stick like a club to knock obstacle down. A pillar of rocks or other objects may be on your way and a sturdy stick can help you safely knock those.

If you are in a building with glass doors or windows or inside a car, you can break the glass with a stick. Make to knock over pieces around your entrance or exit with the stick, too.

9. Fishing Rod

You only need to bring a fishing kit and your survival stick will make a good fishing rod. Tie a line on one end of your walking stick and fish away.

A DIY fishing pole is actually effective and many a fish has been caught this way.

As you guys and gals already know, I am a stickler for carrying things only if they have multiple uses. This guy managed to fit almost an entire survival kit into a walking stick he built from scratch, for under $20.00.

Check out this video from SOS 2054 I found, and find out for yourself, too:

A humble walking stick will indeed surprise you with what it can do for your defense, convenience, safety, and survival. Since you know now the practical and survival uses of this primitive multi-purpose tool, it won't surprise me if it lands a top spot on your list of survival tools for camping, hiking, or SHTF.

What other uses can you think of for carrying a “survival stick”? Let us know in the comments section below!

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**Disclaimer: The contents of this article are for informational purposes only. Please read our full disclaimer.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on October 11, 2013, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

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