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

Thursday, April 25, 2024

organicgreendoctor: garden news-flowers in our garden

organicgreendoctor: garden news-flowers in our garden: GARDEN NEWS-FLOWERS IN OUR GARDEN at our community gardens we have a front meadow that we use for seasonal events in the spring we either le...

garden news-flowers in our garden


at our community gardens we have a front meadow that we use for seasonal events
in the spring we either let it just grow with whatever seeds are planted by nature
or it will be planted with oats or with wildflowers
this year we let it just grow
we have oats lots of sunflowers bachelor buttons some weeds some flowers i dont know what they are and 
these beautiful bright red poppies that stand out as you drive up to park
they are scattered throughout the meadow
ok i scattered some red poppy seeds in different places the last two years
these are some of the progeny from last years poppy flowers

flowers are real important in the garden as they provide a source of food for bees
lots of bees 
these bees help to pollinate our vegetables and our fruit trees

most of our plot holders plant flowers in their garden beds
i accept whatever nature plants in my garden supplementing it with flowers like sunflowers and marigolds
marigolds eg are a good trap plant for insects especially near tomatoes
so i plant them in my tomato beds

in my garden nature has planted lots of calendula and borage so far

these are orange poppies that are everywhere in our garden
we  never have to plant them they just show up
we usually leave them where they grow unless they are in the way

these purple flowers are sweet peas
they are in a plot just as you enter our garden
you can smell them before you reach the gate
they make great flower arrangements for the home

those white flowers are fava bean flowers
we grow them usually as a cover crop as they fix nitrogen in the soil
some folks save the bean seeds and eat them
we usually save the seeds to keep our seed supply up for our cover crop plantings

this blue flower is a borage
its flowers are edible 
they are a brilliant blue
bees just go crazy over this one 
it stays covered with bees all day long

this is a poppy also
i forgot the name of it
it is in the garden plot of a gardener who grows a lot of lowers for her dyeing classes

those yellow flowers in the background are calendula
we never have to plant those either
they are everywhere in the garden

this big ole sunflower just popped up in our front area near the greenhouse
it so far is about 8 foot tall
i had to stand up on a large picnic table to take this photo
we let the birds eat the seeds 
we save a few seeds for our plant sales and for planting in our garden and we give some away at the annual santa barbara seed swap each year

recently a borage popped up with white flowers
i guess a mutation occurred
i prefer the blue ones since thats my favorite color
the bees dont care

this is a bush nasturtium 
the leaves and flowers are edible

this is dryers chamomile
its used in the gardeners dyeing classes

we also let some of our vegetables like cilantro lettuce arugula some kale and broccoli to go to seed ie they will flower
it provides more food for the bees

when you walk up to our gardens right now you see all these beautiful different colors growing throughout our gardens
you will see lots of bees some hummingbirds and just now are seeing some butterflies

so if you garden
be sure and grow flowers in your garden
your bees will love it 

i know ours do

the organicgreen doctor

Wednesday, April 24, 2024

organicgreendoctor: my story revisited #205-the future is brighter

organicgreendoctor: my story revisited #205-the future is brighter: MY STORY REVISITED #205-THE FUTURE IS BRIGHTER when i spoke last year at the santa barbara walk to end alzheimers i mentioned there was hope...

my story revisited #205-the future is brighter


when i spoke last year at the santa barbara walk to end alzheimers i mentioned there was hope for the future for alzheimers patients
when i wrote the blog below in 2015 there was hope 
now that hope is brighter

instead of guessing if one has alzheimers and instead of doing a spinal tap to find out for sure or doing an amyloid pet scan for amyloid plaques real soon a blood test will be used instead as part of the workup with a high degree of accuracy to help diagnose alzheimers 

that spinal fluid result in the blog below is my spinal fluid test for amyloid and tau
that * shows i am just at the borderline of being positive for alzheimers disease in 2010
i was in the mild cognitive impairment stage which correlates with my neuropsychological memory tests

my amyloid pet scan if i had it done in 2010 would have been positive
in 2024 my amyloid pet scan is negative after taking 34 months of aduhelm

then in 2015 the antiamyloid antibodies were just entering the initial phase of clinical trials
i was two years away from starting aduhelm an antiamyloid infusion that removes amyloid plaque from the brain
now leqembi and soon donanemab which both work better than aduhelm are or will be available for treatment only in the early or beginnings of the disease
if you wait too long they dont help

now in clinical trials available in many alzheimers research centers they are giving an antitau drug that removes the tau tangles from the brain

we have made progress since 2015
by 2030 we will be diagnosing using blood tests and will probably be treating alzheimers with 3 types of drugs
antiamyloid drugs
antitau drugs
antiinflammatory drugs

this trifecta will probably slow down the disease

i think thats true
the future is brighter than it was 5 years ago
progress has been made

as i am preparing for two large presentations on alzheimers disease
i stopped
contemplated how much things have changed in the
last 5 years
how much potential there is for the future
those with memory loss due to alzheimers disease

when i was diagnosed with amnestic mild cognitive impairment
that may be due to alzheimers disease five years ago
it was sort of overwhelming
i could only think of what it was like as my mother and
younger brother were at my stage
they probably werent as aware like i am of the problem
what the future held for them
an awful one

all i could think was what course they had
how bad it was for the family and friends and
for themselves

i worried a lot about my future
my wife she and i our future
what it would be like

now as i look back and can look forward
i feel more hope
thats important

personally i feel better both physically and mentally
my cholesterol and blood pressure are under good control
my weight and physical conditioning is under good control
my diet is the best its ever been
i take a boatload of supplements that have been implied
to help slow things down but not definitely proven to help
i stay very active socially mentally and physically
i drink red wine each night and 2-3 cups of coffee each morning
both may help
i dont sleep well at night 5-6 hours of sleep is all i get
luckily since im retired i am able to do an afternoon nap
which helps immensely
maybe we all should be doing this
im happy and contented
i still take aricept (donepezil) and plan to continue it long term
i am afraid to stop it as i might deteriorate some with my memory
if do

looking forward
for myself and others

memory issue folks can now get a very thorough evaluation
so that they will know why they have memory loss
if its alzheimers disease
a good history and physical
labs for anemia chemistry abnormalities like electrolytes kidney
and liver functions and glucose vitamin b12 vitamin d folate
homocysteine levels which are associated with an increased
risk of alzheimers stroke and heart attacks
thyroid levels
these lab abnormalities are all treatable
Image result for alzheimer's memory test

memory tests easily done in the office and online
mri scans
genetic tests for dominant alzheimers and for apoe 4 gene

Image result for spinal fluid for beta amyloid and tau protein organicgreendoctor.com
spinal fluid analysis for the bad beta amyloid and tau protein

Image result for amyvid pet scan
amyvid pet scan of the brain for the presence of beta amyloid
if yours is positive there is a good chance you will get or now have
alzheimers disease
Image result for alzheimer's blood test
coming soon within maybe 2 years a blood test that may be
90-100% accurate in telling you if you got it or not

so soon
like now you can find out if you have it if you have symptoms
some of the tests arent covered by insurance

then once diagnosed
if not sooner
get your self motivated to do those things to stay healthy
get on medicine like aricept as it may slow down symptoms
but at times the side effects suck big time
look into the future
real soon
there may be a pill called a bace inhibitor that you take
and or
a vaccine given as a regular infusion
both if  they are proven to help
will prevent or slow down the disease
you will be able to take them long term

i see hope in the future for myself my siblings
those of you affected now or soon to be
the most important thing to be doing to prevent or slow down alzheimers is prevention
its number one
do all those healthy things mentioned above
get diagnosed early maybe even before symptoms start
then seek treatment 
as time goes on more and more treatments will be available

i probably will be at a stage in the disease where i will be able to receive treatment with antitau drugs or antiinflammatory drugs before my disease takes off

note the bace inhibitor drugs mentioned in the old blog above didnt work 
in fact they made things worse

i dont do all of the supplements i use to take
i only take those based on abnormal labs
eg b12 folate vitamin d

i aggressively treat my cholesterol and blood pressure
note i am off blood pressure meds since i stopped drinking caffeinated coffee
i eat a mind diet mostly 
i stay active mentally physically and socially

join us in helping to fight this disease
we have a much brighter future ahead

the organicgreen doctor

Saturday, April 20, 2024

organicgreendoctor: garden news-can i grow potatoes here

organicgreendoctor: garden news-can i grow potatoes here: GARDEN NEWS-CAN I GROW POTATOES HERE maybe is my answer these pictures above are of my red desota potatoes i grew at the country n in texas ...

garden news-can i grow potatoes here


maybe is my answer

these pictures above are of my red desota potatoes i grew at the country n in texas
this particular crop i grew in my keyhole garden i made from an 8 ft diameter water trough
usually i grew them in my raised beds in my regualr garden

i loved getting those new potatoes as soon as they got big enough to eat
usually you wait until the plant flowers and starts dying back
you can dig down and get a few early small ones
then you could grow green beans and harvest the early ones about the same time 
so you could have green beans and potatoes

i also would dig them early and wash them or sometimes i just wiped off the dirt and ate them right there in the garden
so much produce would be eaten that way

so when i moved here i tried to grow potatoes and my garden
they rotted
in the main garden here we planted a row of potatoes and they rotted

the problem here is we have good topsoil but down about a foot is clay
if its real rainy
potatoes rotten

so after 5 years i tried another method
i grew some in a grow bag i had this fall
it was partially successful with a few small new potatoes

so this january i couldnt find seed potatoes 
i dont remember ever seeing them in the nurseries here
i went to whole foods and got some organic red potatoes since they wouldnt be treated with any chemicals to inhibit sprouting

i then placed them in these egg crates and left them in our condo until their eyes sprouted
it took about 2 weeks for that to happen

i had these 30 gallon grow bags i used last year to grow my veggies while i waited for my plastic and mulch to kill the weeds and mint and cane berries in my garden

i filled them with good garden soil potting soil compost and some organic fertilizer
i stirred all that up real good
i removed about 3/4 of the soil and placed my now seed potatoes in the soil
the potatoes were small ones
i never cut them up like some folks do
then i covered them up with soil

as the plants grew out of the soil i covered them up until the bag was mostly full
also that long thing in the pot is a loofah 
it had fallen from the vine on the fence into the pot
i just kept it watered and waited for the plants to grow out of the last layer of soil

here  are the potato plants a few days ago
now they have a few flowers popping up

i use fish emulsion plus seaweed plus molasses on it every 2 weeks

once the plant flowers and dies back 
then i will harvest the potatoes
pictures to follow

that is 
if i can keep my hands off those new potatoes
you potato growers know what im talking about

can i grow potatoes here
so far so good
ill know soon

the organicgreen doctor

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

organicgreendoctor: my story revisited #205-would i could i will i

organicgreendoctor: my story revisited #205-would i could i will i: MY STORY REVISITED #205-WOULD I COULD I WILL I we have an acquaintance who had a terminal neurological disease that left them with an intact...

my story revisited #205-would i could i will i


we have an acquaintance who had a terminal neurological disease that left them with an intact brain but with a falling body
they were falling a lot even causing harm
their food was pureed since they were choking on regular food
the discussion was to add a feeding tube
they didnt want to let things go that far
i dont want a feeding tube

they were at the point of making a decision
while they could
wait awhile and they might not be able to since others may have to make the decision of what to do

their disease would have left them trapped inside a nonfunctioning body unable to eat or care for themselves but mostly intact mentally

a position they didnt want to be in in
neither would i

our good friend from medical school had huntington's disease that left him mentally intact but unable to feed himself and left him completely bedridden
he died unable to eat and choking all the time

i always wondered if he had it to do over again if he would have chosen our acquaintance's path

i think he would have so he could have spared himself and his loved ones those last few weeks of suffering

our acquaintance chose to end their misery in their life last week
using euthanasia at a time and place of their choosing with their loved ones at their side
doing it their way
avoiding all the misery the last few weeks to months would have entailed
they sent a letter to be sent after it was over explaining why they did it
it seems 
they were peaceful in their last moments
probably sensing a peacefulness they hadnt felt in a long long time
would i
if i could

here is an article  from the ny times
the last day of her life
about a person who planned her death
early in her course of the disease
then carried forward with the plan
when the time came

read and weep and think
would i

in the movie still alice
alice planned her suicide
even had all the drugs ready to use
the problem was she couldnt follow the instructions
find the drugs she had sat aside for this event

my thoughts are
yes i would like to do this
only after i had extracted every bit of cognitive time
i can from this life
when there was no more to extract
it would be the time

would you
this was all surreal since last week i was thinking about end of life stuff for alzheimers patients and for me specifically
i ran across this old blog
i got this email with their last letter to friends and family

it was surreal

so would i
could i
will i
probably not

my neurological fatal disease is different than our acquaintance or my friend
they could choose the time since their brain would still be working ok to make decisions for themselves

for me with my disease
my brain will fell me first
my body fails me

my goal is to extract as much out of my memory stores as i can
so i can enjoy life and my family and friends

when my time comes like theirs i wont be able to make that decision
i dont want to ask others to make it for me

will i
probably not
but i would if i could

the organicgreen doctor