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

Friday, January 30, 2015

otc meds cause this



in alzheimers disease as the brain and nerve cells get damaged
the substance in the nerve cell endings called acetylcholine
starts to decrease
this acetylcholine in needed for the nerve cells to fire
ie for them to work

as alzheimers disease destruction continues
these levels of acetylcholine get lower and lower

then enter
aricept (donepezil) that is used to treat alzheimers symptoms
it inhibits an enzyme called acetycholinesterase
which is the enzyme that breaks down the acetycholine

by inhibiting this enzyme
it makes more acetylcholine available for the nerve cells
to work better those that are left in the brain

this week a study was reported on some otc meds and rx meds
that may have an effect on this system

benadryl (diphenahydramine) that is used for allergies allergic reaction
and commonly sold as a sleep aid

doxepin (brand sinequan) is an antidepressant that is used some for
depression or chronic itching

oxybutynin (brand ditropan) is a bladder medicine that many will
recognized as having been advertised a lot on tv in the past

when these are taken at usual doses some low doses for at least 3 years
they increase the chances of getting alzheimers disease by 60+- %

that is a significant increase

one of the warnings on my aricept (donepezil) that i take
says not to take antihistamines with it
thats benadryl claritin zyrtec allegra and chlortrimeton
since it blocks acetylcholines effect
it counteracts the effects of the aricept

gosh durn
theres enough side effects from the aricept
if i take it i want it to do its job
of raising the acetycholine in the brain

now these studies were done on older folks over 65
for a seven year period
not sure what effect it would have on a younger population
say like kids and young adults

even with this new evidence these drugs cause drowsiness
and can cause confusion in older folks
they are some of the meds that are looked at when someone
complains of memory loss
they are usually recommended to be discontinued

note the doxepin shouldnt be discontinued if its being
used for depression unless under the direction of a
medical provider

i can just hear the doctors as they prescribe ditropan for
bladder control
now your bladder will start working better
your brain wont be

wonder what happens if you add on risk factors like
high blood pressure high cholesterol diabetes family history
of alzheimers genetic predisposition to alzheimers

it is concerning since so many folks take this stuff

its seems the recommendation will be
dont take these things especially as you get older
there are other substitutes

use other sleep aids

use other newer antihistamines like loratidine
unless of course you take aricept (donepezil)

use other antidepressants like citalapram sertraline fluoxetine
ie celexa zoloft prozac

use another approach or med for you bladder control

it seems throughout medicine
that there are always these things that drugs cause
that show up years and years later

this one seems disconcerting to me
60% is a large number
like cancer
no one wants to get alzheimers disease
even me

the organicgreen doctor

Thursday, January 29, 2015

reap what we sow

thats what we do almost on a daily basis
now at the country n

those who read this blog
know that all our produce is grown organically
without pesticides or insecticides or all those other sides
that are used in non organic gardening

not here
no siree

all our compost is now made on site
by the industrious country n chickens
eating and shredding whatever we throw in our compost pile

all are produce is watered with rainwater
either from the sky
from our drip irrigation system from our rainwater tanks

last evening for our supper
i picked these carrots

then these beets

then this broccoli

then in this dish i added
our onions we have stored from last years crop
our garlic from last years crop
our green beans from last years crop
our poblano pepper from last years crop
our rosemary from our yard
note the bees cover this rosemary every day right now
when its warm
potatoes no thats from the store
mushrooms from the store also

then crushed black pepper and sea salt and a few flakes
of red pepper
olive oil is drizzled over all this
its all stirred up
grilled for 30 minutes

then consumed
its hard to duplicate the flavor of these vegetables
with even organic veggies bought from the store

plus we know what was used on these veggies
or wasnt used

then i also harvested for our greens ill cook today
with my crockpot greens recipe
swiss chard

asian greens and curly leaf kale

cabbage and broccoli leaves

dinosaur kale

adding our onions poblanos and garlic to them
along with pepper salt pepper flakes vegetable broth
honey butter olive oil balsamic vinegar

yum is all i can say
makes you want to be a vegetarian it does

we reap what we sow
here at the country n

the organicgreen doctor

Wednesday, January 28, 2015


stands for habitat for humanity
jimmy carter made this organization well known
because of his involvement in the builds

there are chapters scattered all over the world
we have one in williamson county here in central texas
houses have been built in jarrell georgetown round rock
leander and taylor
65+ of them
plus lots of rebuilds and rehabs of established houses
now in nearby austin they have the benefit of larger donor
in williamson county there is really only one big company
dell computers
who regularly donates by donating to habitat for humanity
based on the donor hours of its employees
if an employee works 6 hours they donate an amount equal
to part of their pay

thats the only big donor

the way habitat for humanity williamson county works
they have a restore that gets stuff donated to them like
lumber windows doors shelving plumbing etc
they sell it
the revenue helps offset the cost of operating the store
and habitat for humanity

the majority of the monies for its operations and
its houses it builds comes from donations

in the past a large group like a church or a business
eg a large well known bank use to sponsor at least
one house a year
they give enough money  to build the house

however those fundings from churches and businesses
have dried up
thanks to the economy
you would think since we bailed out the banks
since they are making a killing right now
they could still support house builds

the way habitat for humanity works is
a person must be gainfully employed
have a good credit rating
be within the federal guidelines for income
to qualify for a house

then they have to put in somewhere between
350-500 hours of actually working on their house
or with habitat or humanity

then the new owner signs a note for the mortgage
which is usually about half what its assessed value
usually around $60,0000+ at zero percent interest
most of the work is done by volunteers to cut down
on the cost of the house
some contractors like concrete plumbing electrical
have to be paid although many do it at reduced rates

these houses are built to look better than the houses that
surround them even in the subdivisions eg in round rock
they improve the look of the community
have increased the tax base for that area

so it all starts
when there is money raised to build the house
eg you have to have $60,000 to start
right now because of the lack of big donors the next
house funding is not in place

they or i say we since i feel like im part of habitat
need help
i am diverting $250 from money i have accumulated for
landscaping to the house build
since if the house dont get built then there wont be no

you can help financially by
making a donation for this house build

go to

-click on donate today in the middle of the screen
put in your donation amount eg i will put in $250

-on the next line id like to make this donation click on  construction

-on the next line write in moonglow house
that way the money will go to the construction of that house
so we can get started on it

you can also use a form to mail in a check just click on that part

donate some of your tax refund

this family for this house
both are employed but are below the federal guidelines for poverty
to qualify
says something about what people get paid
they and their kids are excited to get the house
they already are working at our present build to get in
their hours
remember its not given to them
they have to earn it and pay for it

habitat for humanity williamson county has a successful
rate of folks who stay in their houses
much better than the banks or mortgage houses

please help

the organicgreen doctor

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

country n gardening

this last week i planted our winter onions

first you have to have good soil
the prerequisite for a good garden

last year i wrote a blog about the hugelkultur method
i used to prepare my beds
using cardboard newspapers leaves tree trunks and branches
all down in the bottom of my 4ft x 16ft raised beds
all of which i dug the soil out to about 2ft
filling it with the above stuff
all this stuff holds water deep in the soil for those dry times
which come each summer
then i layered the rest with newspapers leaves compost
soil newspapers leaves compost soil until the bed was filled

now after a year that soil has percolated and enriched itself
to where it is today
i then added a layer of compost added organic fertilizer
added molasses and humates
then just let it sit now for about 3 months
those onions are gonna love this soil

i start with onion plants since they do better here than the sets
i use 1015 onions a white sweet onion since
i have found it does better for us
keeps good
doesnt burn my eyes
tastes sweet

so i plant the onions about 2 inches deep
poking my index finger in the soil using a bare finger
i like to get that rich dirt under my nails and on my fingers

i plant them one hook em horn sign apart
since on my hand that is about 6 inches apart

i water them in with a solution of either johns formula
of fish emulsion seaweed or just seaweed solution

after getting all 200+ plants planted
i lightly cover them with a thin layer of the leaves you
gave me
thanks again

these plants will survive ok without much protection until
the weather warms
watching the weather close for some low 20s
if that happens i cover it up with row cover

some time in may based on when they get ready
the stalks start to fall over
we will pick them
eventually store them in onion chimes

well worth all the effort

next to plant are seed potatoes
sometime in early february when the soil is dried out some

i recently transplanted my tomato transplants from their
originally small pots that i seeded them in
4 inch pots
hoping they will take off and be ready for early transplanting
next month

we are harvesting out lettuces from our keyhole garden
i seeded them by broadcasting a mixture of lettuce seeds
now that they are ready
we just go out and use our scissors
cut what we need that day for our meals
leaving a small stub of lettuce left
which will soon grow back into more lettuce leaves

we do the same for beets and spinach

so we will have salad greens until the weather warms
in may or june

today i will harvest swiss chard kale broccoli cabbage beet greens
spinach for a pot of greens for our supper tonight

so thats whats happening in the country n garden

the organicgreen doctor

Monday, January 26, 2015


some think that was the sound that was made
before the patriots colts game
last weekend
i say
who cares
so what

when i was growing up we always had a basketball
goal outside
we a lot of times would leave the basketball where it
was when we finished playing
out in the weather

we always seemed to have an old basketball that had
a slow leak
so the air would gradually leak out
never all of it
just enough to make it sit flat on one side
on the ground
so it looked like a brown half moon
during the cold rainy weather

now we usually couldnt find that little needle
that you inserted in the ball to blow it up
maybe if we lived in new england we could have
borrowed a patriots needle
theirs it seems works well

what we did
was take it inside of the house
place in front of our big butane gas heater
warm it up for awhile
kapop it would go eventually
returning back to its full moon shape

hint nfl
heat applied to a cold gas makes it expand

out to the basketball court
well it was a worn out spot in the yard
the ball would bounce around maybe
slightly overfilled
like it was suppose to

so that was what i was thinking when i heard
about the patriots footballs loosing air
we noticed that happening every winter
when i was growing up
didnt need no reporter or scientist to explain
how that happened to our basketball

now in my opinion
who cares
it didnt alter the game
the patriots just beat the heck out of the colts
out manned the colts were
not out psied

they could have just called me and i would have
told them this story

just play the game please

the organicgreen doctor

Friday, January 23, 2015

of mice and men

for those of us who follow alzheimers disease
we know that doing research on mice
is not like doing research on men

many times over the last several years have i seen
research that seems to work well in mice
but it doesnt in men

mice and men arent the same

that said the mice are used frequently for research
they are easily manipulated genetically to test
research theories

there are mice that get alzheimers disease
100% of the time
they get those awful plaques and tangles just like human
alzheimers patients do
well researchers splice the dominant gene for alzheimers into them
so they all get the disease

seems orwellian or something
super gmos maybe

so now they have a model to test drugs on
maybe see the results fairly quickly

knowing if it works it might work in humans
but with no guarantee
its cheaper than doing human studies

now recently i noticed in social media articles
and news articles like this one
that many of you sent to me
thanks for the info
stanford finding a cure for alzheimers disease
in mice it was

heres the story
inside the brain are cells called microglia
they clean up the garbage in the brain that accumulates
like the beta amyloid and tau proteins that accumulate
to form tangles and plaques
the hallmark of alzheimers disease

when we are young we make a lot of these microglia
when we get old we produce a protein
called ep2 that prevents the microglia from doing their
so as we age we have a greater chance of getting the disease

stopping this ep2 production my slow down the process
or reverse it

so in these mice
they put in a gene that stopped ep2 production
thus allowing microglia to work and do their job
the mice either didnt get alzheimers or the alzheimers
was reversed

they also gave a drug that stops ep2 production in
older alzheimers rats or mice
they got better

exciting if these results transfer to humans
take a drug to stop ep2 production
allowing the microglia to do their job
we then dont get alzheimers disease

think new york city without any garbage pick up
or police protection
for weeks
what a mess that would be
add back the garbage pick up and the cops
the city returns back to normal
of course the mice wouldnt be as happy

so yes its exciting
ive learned to not be too excited when i read stuff
now after 4+ years following alzheimers research

that said
if someone like a stanford researcher called me today
said we have some ep2 inhibitors to take
you want some
i would say
im all in

the organicgreen doctor

Thursday, January 22, 2015

she can stay now

here at the country n we have a 1200 square foot barn
on one end
there is a 400 square foot room
that is well sealed
with a large door that opens outwards probably big enough
to drive a small tractor through it

when we moved in years ago
it was empty
but over the years it became fuller and fuller
it became like a big attic
growing and growing and growing with its contents
filed in an addish method
that became worse and worse as the time went on

i didnt go in there much
i occasionally would open the door and peek in
you know as often as you go in your attic

oh my i would say
that doesnt look good
the years went by

the barn as we would call it
became a problem in our marriage

my wife she said
when you start diggin around in there
i dont want to be around anywhere close
its probably good she wasnt

before my diagnosis and getting on aricept (donepezil)
i would look in there
would get real mad
kicking the junk and throwing things across the growing
mountain of debri
saying words i cant print here
well yes i can !@#$%^&*(+&)

now since being on the aricept for awhile
i cant seemed to get mad or angry
in other words you probably cant tick me off
unless you hoard at my place

this being on aricept may have saved our marriage
when i started dealing
with this clumps  and clumps of saved stuff

if you have watched any of those hording tv shows
think the worst one you ever saw
thats our country n storage room

hoarders on steroids
varmints loved it

i figured out what must have happened over the years
my wife she was scared to go in there
ok that snake skin i saw in there was pretty dang long
she just opened the big door
took whatever she was going to store
just slung it in there as hard as she could
closed the door before it landed
random natural filing system is what she used

the turning point was when i went searching for files i
had to store for legal reasons for 21 years
time had passed and it was time to destroy those files

as i climbed over mt everest to get to my files
i slipped and fell
not having any idea what i was falling on
yes i was concerned at times

on leaving the room
at the exit
i slipped and slid down a mountain of debri
landing on a stack of dishes
shattering them to smithereens

ok i said thats it
this stuff has to all go

so we decided i would start out getting what i could
recognize out of there
like my files
off to the shredder they went
one big full pickup truck full

then i took my pick and axe and shovel
started digging

a truckload of stuff to goodwill and the salvation army
a truckload no make that two truck loads of stuff
to the recycle place
more than one truckload to the trash folks
a good half truck load of paper goods i buried deep underneath
my garden beds covering them back up with my soil and compost
old tax records feeding the long roots of my tomatoes

then on mlk day
we both agreed
thats the day we finish this off
we dug through old letters cards records pictures albums
a long day it was

once i had cleared out enough room i built storage shelves
from lumber salvaged from the habitat for humanity builds
stuff that was headed for the dumpster

as we sorted through the stuff
we placed it in clear labeled storage bins
placed in an appropriate arrangement on the shelves

ocd wins over add

so the end result is the last picture below

we had a truckload of stuff that was headed to the trash
a large container of recycle papers and a large stack of
a large container of paper goods headed for the bottom
of the compost pile
so now we have a large storage room
things in containers all organized
with about 3/4 of the room empty

how could this happen

i told my wife she after we finished
man were we dirty and tired

you can stay now

the organicgreen doctor

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

we are what we....


as i know more and more about what effect diet
has on someone who develops alzheimers
i realize how important it is that we eat
all our lives

i wonder what my health would be like right now if
i had eaten like i eat now all my life
would i have high blood pressure
would i have high cholesterol
which i had for years before i realized it at 40
but then i had 40 years of high levels doing its
slowly like the corrosion build up in a water pipe
in you house
until it reaches the point where damage gets done
some of it is subtle
in those small vessels to the heart and the brain

what if i had eaten right all my life
would my memory issues been delayed
or not happened

i think about this a lot when i shop for groceries
especially when i wait in line for checkout
i look at what other folks have put in their carts
sodas full of sugar
orange juice thats really just orange flavored sugar water
the cancer that has taken over our health here in the us
cereals like those advertised heavily to your kids
on tv
all loaded with that sugar that our bodies werent
programmed to ingest
all those prepackaged and processed foods that
fill up those carts
all that meat
now meat is ok
i do eat meat
but not as much as what i see in folk carts

i recently cut my bread consumption in half
since i have a turkey sandwich with chips for
lunch every day
have toast with egg ie a egg sandwich for breakfast
i use one slice of bread and use 1/2 the number of chips
i have eliminated 500 calories from my diet
thats worth a few pounds weight loss over a year

so when im checking out i look down at my cart
half of what i buy are fruits and vegetables
there are no processed foods
some meat but not much
whole wheat bread with nuts and seeds added
dried fruits and nuts
no cereal
no bon bons or twinkies
even no snickers
just  good healthy food

now what if we all ate like this in the us
we would all be healthier and live longer
add some exercise
we would cut down on the incidence of alzheimers
by 30%+-
decrease heart disease strokes diabetes knee and hip replacements

of course
we would have more folks drawing social security for a
lot longer time

so we are
what we eat

the organicgreen doctor

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

bee time to plant

my bee journey continues
this weekend i went to my third bee class
at the wonderful lady bird johnson wildflower center

now i love this place
i really like to go there by myself so i can just wonder
around and look at things

now this is a larger cistern at the front of the entrance
to the wildflower center
they collect rainwater there in large quantities
to use to irrigate the plants with
to keep their small ponds full
its worth the trip folks

it was nice to wonder around this weekend before my
bee class started
looking at what stuff looks like in the dead of winter
to compare it to my landscape

looked closely at some thunderturf lawn that was dormant
i was impressed at how compact it was
its made up of blue grama buffalo and curly mesquite grasses
nice lawn
drought tolerant

after roaming around for awhile i went to my bee class
a beginners class
which built upon the last two bee classes i have been to

i am ready to read more on beekeeping
order my bee suit
get my smoker and hive tool

then im all set to go

i have an upcoming class in march on handling the hive
a four hour class with an experienced beekeeper
its a hands on class

i also am increasing my bee friendly plants in my landscape
i already have most of them suggested for this area

i recently planted a mistflower a mexican oregano lantana
mexican mint marigold and firebush
i will  let my arugulas broccoli lettuce go to seed and flower

i want to keep those bees happy and busy

i have a ton of bees at my place already
wonder where they live
im not sure what kind they are
but hopefully soon i will be able to identify them

its that time of year
to plant the onions in this area

i use onion plants like these since they do better here than the sets do

in our kitchen we are close to using up all the onions we planted
at this time last year

we hang them in panty hose and hang them from the rafters in our garage
using them as we need them
last year many of ours were the size of a softball

i choose the 1015 onions for this area
since they are sweet
dont seem to burn my eyes when i cut them up
today i will use two of them from last years crop to make some
anasazi beans along with last years garlic and last years poblano pepper
using my organic bean recipe

so be looking at the nurseries or feed stores for these onions
they can be planted in the garden or in flower beds or in flower pots

its well worth it
to go out
cut down an organic onion that you have grown yourself
they just taste better that way

the organicgreen doctor

Friday, January 16, 2015

if it happens to me

If I Get Dementia
  1. If I get dementia, I want my friends and family to embrace my reality. If I think my spouse is still alive, or if I think we’re visiting my parents for dinner, let me believe those things. I’ll be much happier for it.
  2. If I get dementia, I don’t want to be treated like a child. Talk to me like the adult that I am. 
  3.  If I get dementia, I still want to enjoy the things that I’ve always enjoyed. Help me find a way to exercise, read, and visit with friends. 
  4.  If I get dementia, ask me to tell you a story from my past. 
  5.  If I get dementia, and I become agitated, take the time to figure out what is bothering me. 
  6.  If I get dementia, treat me the way that you would want to be treated. 
  7.  If I get dementia, make sure that there are plenty of snacks for me in the house. Even now if I don’t eat I get angry, and if I have dementia, I may have trouble explaining what I need. 
  8.  If I get dementia, don’t talk about me as if I’m not in the room. 
  9.  If I get dementia, don’t feel guilty if you cannot care for me 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. It’s not your fault, and you’ve done your best. Find someone who can help you, or choose a great new place for me to live. 
  10.  If I get dementia, and I live in a dementia care community, please visit me often. 
  11.  If I get dementia, don’t act frustrated if I mix up names, events, or places. Take a deep breath. It’s not my fault. 
  12.  If I get dementia, make sure I always have my favorite music playing within earshot. 
  13.  If I get dementia, and I like to pick up items and carry them around, help me return those items to their original places. 
  14.  If I get dementia, don't exclude me from parties and family gatherings. 
  15.  If I get dementia, know that I still like receiving hugs or handshakes. 
  16.  If I get dementia, remember that I am still the person you know and love.
  17. by racheal wonderlin in alzheimers reading room