welcome to the organic green doctor blog

i am a family physician who was diagnosed with
early mild cognitive impairment(mci) amnestic type on december 21, 2010
this is a precursor to alzheimers disease
because of this diagnosis i have opted to stop practicing medicine
this blog will be about my journey with this disease
please feel free to follow me along this path
i will continue blogging on organic gardening, green living,
solar power, rainwater collection, and healthy living
i will blog on these plus other things noted to be interesting

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

thankful thanks


i want to wish each of you who read my blog
happy thanksgiving tomorrow

this morning as i read a posting from a former patient about a health
issue i realized what purpose i serve or could serve to those of
you who read this blog

i hopefully answered his question to his satisfaction

i get a lot of emails and personal facebook questions from people on
all type of topics and issues and realized today that i really should
post the question and my answer on the blog for everyone to see

a relative actually two relatives recently went in to see their provider
for a physical and both were on medicare
ones visit was not billed right and the provider was paid nothing and
based on medicare rules the relative can not legally pay the bill
ok it  was for $110

based on my knowledge as a physician and someone who had a special
interest in the ins and outs of insurance billings and codings
i came up with scenarios where medicare would have paid the provider
anywhere form $75 to $220 for the visit
if things had been coded right and the paper work handled correctly

so this is an example of what i have to offer you the readers of this blog

i also get a lot of questions and inquiries on alzheimers from my talks
i have given my blog my personal email my personal facebook and
encounters with folks in my day to day interactions

i really should post these when they occur so others can read them

ive helped people connect with research studies find a provider who
will provide good alzheimers care hook up with caregiver groups
answer questions about medications etc etc

ive helped people revise their medications so they can save money
sometimes as much as $2000-$3000 a year
the system really rips us all off but many of us dont know how to beat
the system

ive been in the system and now am outside the system and have a unique
opportunity help others to beat the system

i know a lot about health insurance and based on responses ive gotten
eg on obamacare writings they have been helpful for others to understand
whats going on with it

i hope in the future to post more of this stuff
to help you the readers of this blog get more information on how to
deal with all this

as a physician and now as a patient i do have a lot to offer you as i
weave myself through our medical system

just this week my flex account folks
you know its my money they have in their possession right
refused to reimburse for dental xrays that were done recenty
even though theyve paid for them in the past
seems like a covered service to me
ive appealed it but theres a good chance i wont win
i will have to send them a check for the xrays since they had already
paid the dentist
but what i did was  i filed for my mileage to the dentist
the pharmacists my neuologist my primary care provider
and for my ultrasound i had done
the amount i filed for is three times what they are denying
take that flex account
youll not keep any of my money
send me the check please

while im at it ill just go ahead in the next month and use your
money and use up all my flex money for the year
dont worry youll get your money back it will just be next august
when you get your final payment

another example of what i have to offer you in this blog
a lot on gardening and a few smiles along the way

do have a happy thanksgiving weekend

the organicgreen doctor

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

what if

for those of us who follow the alzheimers research
there are two things that we know about and are anxiously awaiting
the results

a4 study
colombian study

in both these studies
people in the a4 study who have
positive beta amyloid in the brain on scans called
amyvid pet scans and abnormal levels of beta amyloid and
tau levels in the spinal fluid
and in the case of the colombian study
family members who carry the gene for alzheimers that
means you will get the disease will also have these
two tests done

no one in either group have any symptoms yet

both studies will have regular amyvid pet scans and spinal
fluid analysis for the beta amyloid and tau
both imply if positive that the patient will get or will have
alzheimers disease


the study subjects will also be given one of the new alzheimers vaccines
which will induce or produce antibodies against
the beta amyloid and remove it from the brain

over time we will know if giving this vaccine early on
will prevent the development of alzheimers disease
which it will if the beta amyloid theory is correct

how does this affect me
the ogd

this last week i had my regular yearly visit with my neurologist
for follow up for
my early mild cognitive impairment amnestic type
that may turn out to be from alzheimers disease
diagnosed almost 3 years ago

i have been stable over this period of time except for some
mild problems with short term memory that only i notice

i presently take aricept (donepezil) 10 mg for the possibility
of having alzheimers dsease
its used when the diagnosis is first made or in my case
strongly suspected

i take care of my health
especially my blood pressure and cholesterol
2 of the 3 most important to control to prevent or slow down
alzheimers diesease
the third is diabetes which i dont have
more about this later

what i am looking for in research studies now

im in the alzheimers disease neuroimaging initiative now
its not a treatment study but its the most important one ever done
on alzheimers disease
the information from this study has provided the basis for the
a4 and colombian studies

i want to get treatment now while im so early no one notices anything
these two studies would be what im looking for

the colombian study is restricted to family members in colombia
that carry that awful gene which means they will get it
i know that i dont have that gene since ive been tested

the a4 does not
if i qualify i will get the beta amyloid scan amyvid and yes have
to get that dang spinal tap again and again
but i might receive one of those new alzheimers vaccine
that if it works would slow down the process at least while
i was on the study
unless of course i would get put in the control group
which i dont want to be in

if i dont qualify for that one
i will get in a nasal insulin study for 6 months
the nasal insulin increase the glucose into the nerve cells
in the brain where alzheimers starts as the insulin travels up the
olfactory nerve the smeller nerve i call it
which may slow down but wont prevent the disease
this may be my fall back study

then in 2014 or 2015 there is a study that will start in arizona

where those who carry the apoe4/apoe4 double gene like i have
which increases your chance of getting alzheimers disease significantly
will be given either a new research drug or one of the new
alzheimers vaccines
will be followed over a period of time monitoring the
beta amyloid scans and levels and the tau levels to see if they decrease
and to see if it prevents the development of the disease

the budget cuts and sequester had shut this study down
but the nih scrapped up funds to get it going

i am on the contact list for that study when it starts
i will do it if i qualify
please on please dont put me in the control group

the organicgreen doctor

Monday, November 25, 2013

so this is what its like

ive never lived in the mountains or way up north
and had to endure those long cold winters

the closest we ever came to that was when my wife she
was in graduate school at the university of arkansas
in faytetteville arkansas
tucked in the ozarks in the northwest corner of the state
when the year we were there those wintery storms
came through on a weekly basis
and it seemed there was always snow and ice on the
roads that winter during january and february
i didnt like it then
and i dont like it now

as we here in central texas have been forced in side by
cold weather for several days and will have at least two
more days before we get that warming trend we
usually see here in central texas

all that cold rain and sleeting thats been going on does
make for a fun weekend though

so we were locked inside by the weather
i have my gardens all covered up with the white row cover
blankets that lets the water through but keeps it warmer
around our plants

we have had our wood burning stove going all weekend like
an old train engine
shoveling in wood to keep it full
after awhile the heat from the stove warms all the limestone
inside our house and we basically have this warm oven
that we can live in
its the best warmth you can ever experience
almost cocoon like

then for me i got to watch football all weekend long and
mostly vegetated on the couch that big comfortable made
for football and lounging and napping

i saw the razorbacks lose but i think theres a team brewing inside
there that will get better every year
dont give up hog fans

i watched that johnny football play
he lost but i would pay to watch him play live
hope he goes pro this year

i watched the baylor bears hoping to watch that high powered
offense but they got mauled by the osu cowboys

i watched the cowboys win thank goodness
the best of the worst it seems

then i watched the beginnings of the peyton vs tom battle
wished i could have stayed awake for the whole game
it sounded like a good one at the end
im real glad i wasnt at that game and am glad i dont live in new england

ill never complain about our weather again

so a good cold but warm inside snuggly weekend
here at the country n

sometimes you just have to have one like that you know

the organicgreen doctor

Friday, November 22, 2013

where were you, pictures

do you remember where you were on that day
i know where i was
i was in my american history class in the 9th grade
my american history teacher announced to us that
president kennedy was shot and had died
i can still remember how shocked we all were
and i remember watching my teacher cry as
she told us

this event seemed to start a bad start to the sixties
as assassinations seemed to be societys answer to
ridding society of politicians and prominent people
john f kennedy
robert kennedy
martin luther king
george wallace

it was a sad decade the sixties
i can only imagine what it would be like if we had had all
the tv coverage and internet coverage we have today
we would all have been terrorized by the sensationalism
it was a tragic time period
that i hope we can learn from

i watched news coverage last night and plan to watch it today and
tonight on the kennedy assassination
we do have a lot to learn from it

dallas and texas was a toxic environment with a lot of money
poured in to the antikennedy campaign by a rich millionaire
with a lot of antikennedy sentiment in dallas
seems familiar doesnt it

now in 2013 no president would enter that arena and expose themselves
to the risk of assassination
it just takes one crazy person

this toxic environment that was present then seems to be present nowadays
nothing good will ever come from this

here is a link to the dallas news website which has devoted today
to the kennedy assassination

please go to it if you want to know more about that day and that time
there are a lot of articles pictures and videos

even buy a dallas morning news today

now for a more  pleasant topic
here are the pictures of the monarchs at my wife shes school
taken by a student

my wife shes garden in the foreground below

the organicgreen doctor

Thursday, November 21, 2013

save them both


the monarch butterfly numbers are dropping here in the united
states and in their final resting place in mexico
last year their numbers in mexico was the lowest ever recorded

here in the united states their major host plant the milkweed
is declining in numbers thanks to
things like decreasing habitat for breeding wintering and migrating
habitat loss

thats us in the united states especially texas is the loss of
migrating habitat loss

(the larva or caterpillar only eats milkweed and no other plant
except maybe the butterfly bush)

another is herbicide use and the use of genetically modified corn
and soybeans that have the herbicide and insecticides built in
seems wrong to me
seems its like the superbugs weve created from overuse of antibiotics
we are creating a super weed problem
and along the way killing off good insects like the monarch butterflies

even those of us who try to plant plants that the monarch like
may be harming them if we are not careful what we plant
and where we get them from
apparently many of the nursery plants are treated heavily with
insecticides which harm the monarch

this year at my wife shes school they have planted a lot of native
plants some of which the monarchs apparently love
as they are all covered with monarchs as they go south to mexico
it takes energy found in flower nectar
you know to travel that far for these delicate
beautiful insects

click on this link to look at my wife shes garden in the foreground
of one of the pictures and then the large group of monarchs on
the native flowers and a close up of a monarch
(note there is on the left upper side of the web page a slide show
of pictures
wait patiently and watch for the monarch pictures)

so how can we do our part to save the monarch
avoid insecticides in the landscape
yes go organic
be careful of the plants you buy that may have insecticides on them
plant several milkweeds in your landscape
and another host plant the butterfly bush

so lets save them and plant some host plants for them
milkweed available at all nurseries
and maybe a butterfly bush

heres a link to texas gardeners seeds on monarchs and another
link on monarchs

in your yard also plant fruit trees and lots of flowers especially native
wildflowers which provide the nectar like you see in my wife
shes schools garden for the trip home to mexico
each fall for the monarch butterflies

yes we can all do our part to save these beautiful insects


in austin boggy creek farms and other urban farms are being
threatened by new regulations
these small farms are organic and have been around for several years
providing fresh vegetables and eggs for local restaurants
and for the residents of austin and surrounding areas
its not unusual to see chefs from the best restaurants in town
at their farm stand

they also have been for me and hundreds of other organic gardeners
a great source of educational information on raising organic produce
and for carol ann at boggy creek farm for telling us in great seminars
on how to raise backyard chickens

ive based on what i grow in my garden each season on what carol ann
grows in her boggy creek farm by buying their produce and talking
to her about what they plant and when

here is a link to a video on carol anns boggy creek farm and her
feelings on the new regulations

speaking of our government over regulating things

wonder if its because these farms are sitting on great land
for development in east austin

lets save our urban farms and save carol anns boggy creek farm

yes lets save them both
the monarchs and the urban farms

the organicgreen doctor

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

winter gardening a review

several people have asked me about planting a fall or
winter garden
so i decided to do a review on what to do

i try to use the kiss method
keep it simply simple
i use to say keep it simple stupid
but that seemed too negative
so its simply simple

this of course is for central texas but if you live in new york
or california it is of course different this time of year
but the principles are the same

first good soil got to have good soil
if you are starting go buy good organic soil
do not skimp on this
in this area the best is the natural gardeners hill country garden soil
there are others but the hill country soil is what the other ones
are measured against
it already has in it what one needs
all you have to do its plant your garden

you clear off your garden of any left overs from the summer
add 3-4 inches of good compost
that you make yourself is best
around here the lady bug brand of farm style compost or
manure compost is the other best

to this i add a light sprinkling of lady bug brand 8-2-4 or medina
growin green organic fertilizer
this adds nitrogen to be gradually realized for several weeks

then i add cotton seed meal lightly sprinkled over the bed
just enough to give a yellow tint to the compost
this provides a more instant release of nitrogen for the plants

then i gently stir up the fertilizers with the compost

then i plant right into the compost
i dont really work the compost into the soil

when i  plant a transplant like broccoli or spinach i add a
small amount of earth worm castings to the soil

i water them in with a seaweed solution using eg maxicrop
seaweed which gives the new plants a boost from its
minerals which stimulate new root growth

new seeds planted according to the directions on the package
are watered with seaweed also
and are watered once or twice a day until they sprout
based of course on how much rain we have and the soil moisture
if the seeds dry out they wont sprout

why do i go to all this trouble to do all this to the soil
make a trip to the natural gardener and look at their fall garden
pretty dang amazing

i spent a hour with their gardener asking him a ton of questions
then when i applied them to this years garden the result were
as my wife she says

during the winter i mulch my plantings well to protect them
i use pine straw i buy in bales
it lets water through quite easily but also protects the plants
by keeping the soil warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer
but you can use leaves newspaper etc

i use row cover a thin white material i buy at the nursery
it comes in a thin version commonly used in cooler temps
and to keep insects out
and then a thicker version that provides more protection
from the cold

when its going to be freezing i keep them covered
when it warms up like it does here in central texas i
just roll it up out of the way

so thats how you do it
fall winter gardening
the absolutely best time to garden in central texas

today i will plant more spinach plants and replant some
broccoli and kale the wind and insects destroyed

ive replanted a block of lettuce and beets that we will
eat in our salads
and will replant another block later on

so in my garden now i have sweet peas parsley cilantro
asian greens swiss chard broccoli kale beets carrots
lettuce spinach multiplying green onions chives arugula

nows your chance
go for it

the organicgreen doctor