Survival Illness: Dehydration, Food Poisoning, Diarrhea Remedies, by Shivam

Survival Illnesses can be serious.  Know some basic remedies.

Survival Illnesses can be serious. Know some basic remedies.

Certain illnesses are associated with a move to a remote or a wilderness area. These are almost always the result of making a transition from one environment to another. One living in a remote area tends to be affected less often with common colds, flu, and viruses found in heavily populated areas


Diarrhea is one of the most common illness that affect people who move into a wilderness environment. It is often cause by making changes in diet, drinking contaminated water, eating spoiled food, and handling stress that survival situations might bring with them.  Diarrhea may be treated by limiting your intake to only liquids for 24 hours.  Never try diarrhea remedies without first seeking medical attention.

In a survival situation, where you may not have access to professional medicine,  one technique how to stop diarrhea may be made by boiling the bark of hardwoods in water to leach out the tannic acid in the bark.  (Acorns can also be boiled to remove the tannic acid and then saved for food.)  Boil the bark or acorns for 2 or more hours, and then let the solution cool. It will smell bad and taste worst but will generally stop diarrhoea. You should drink the solution by the cupful every two hours and drink an additional cup of solution following each bowel movement until the diarrhea stops.


Dehydration is the result of insufficient fluid reserves in the body. Simply put, if you are not drinking enough water, juice or other liquids to replace fluids lost through the body’s natural processes of urination, expiration and perspiration you become dehydrated.

The average adult loses between 1 and 2 quarts of fluid daily through normal bodily functions. In environments of extreme temperature and at high altitude this fluid loss increases significantly. Add to this the stress of a survival situation and possible injury or illness, and marinating the fluid balance becomes even more important.

The kidneys are very sensitive to the body’s fluid levels and react quickly to conserve fluid when there is a reduced intake. When the kidneys are conserving fluids by reducing urination, it is sign that you may not be drinking enough to replace normally fluid loss.

Urination of less than 1/2 quarts in a 24 hour period is also a sign of dehydration. Urine with a dark colour or a strong odour also indicates that you are not drinking sufficient water to replace fluids in your body.  When you are consuming enough water your urine should be light in colour and without a strong odor. You should also pass about a quart of urine every 24 hours.

Other indications of dehydration are thirst, fatigue, dark sunken eyes, emotional instability, loss of skin elasticity and a trench like line down the centre of the tongue.

To treat dehydration you must replace lost body fluids, this of course means drinking water,  at least 2 quarts a day.  However, since water contains no electrolytes, you should also drink juices, soups and the likes. Avoid coffee and tea, as they are diuretics and cause renal fluid loss. You should prevent dehydration by drinking water regularly throughout the day, thus replacing fluid as it is lost. In a very hot environment, you may want to add 1/4 teaspoon salt to 1 quart of water consumed each day.  If you have quite a bit of salt in your diet this might not be necessary, but this should be kept in mind if you are not used to hot environments or are working at an increased level.

Intestinal Parasites

Intestinal parasites are another illness that can affect the health of a wilderness survivor.   Intestinal parasites result from eating undercooked meat or vegetables contaminated with feces.  Normally, a special medication is required to treat an intestinal parasite infection in the body, but you may not have these available to you in the wilderness. Expedient methods of killing intestinal parasites rely on changing the environment in the gastrointestinal tract and are not without their own dangers.  If you have no other remedies you can use the following tips to kill intestinal parasites

  • Mix 4 table spoons of salt in 1 quart of warm water and drink. DO NOT REPEAT this treatment.

The following techniques are not recommended but we provide them for knowledge regarding an emergency or life-threatening survival situation:

  • Eat one or one and a half cigarettes. The nicotine kills the parasites, allowing your system to pass them. This treatment may be repeated in 48 hours if necessary.
  • Drink 2 table spoons of kerosene, repeat in 48 hours if necessary.

Food Poisoning

Food poisoning is a common threat to the survivor.  Food may be improperly preserved and stored, allowing for the development of harmful bacteria.  Food poisoning due to toxins results in the onset of acute symptoms (nausea, vomiting and diarrhea) soon after ingestion.  Resting and consuming large quantities of clean water to flush the system are indicated in this case.  If the poisoning is due to ingesting bacteria, clues can thus be the gradual onset of nausea, vomiting and diarrhea soon after eating the food.   Resting and consuming large quantities of clean water to flush the system are also indicated in this case.   Antibiotics can also help a bacterial infection,  if you have them available.  In a survival situation, eating small amounts of fine, clean charcoal can also help relieve the symptoms of food poisoning.

Rashes and Fungal Infections

Rashes and fungal infections are seldom life threatening problems, but they are uncomfortable and should be treated.  The best treatment is to keep the infected area clean and dry.  Do not apply alcohol or iodine to burn out the rash or infection, because this is not effective.  Exposing the area to sunlight does help clear up the problem.

General Treatment

The human body is remarkable in its ability to fight illness and repair itself. In something like 80 percent of the cases where people seek medical treatment they would fully recover from their illness or injuries without a physician.  Of  course, the other 20 percent are traumatic injuries or serious illnesses that are too severe for the body to correct. By focusing on general treatment, we can help the body repair itself.

Medical Disclaimer for: SURVIVALFOODGEAR.COM