5 September 2018
Hello and Welcome to My DIY Uber Resource Guide for Apartment Gardening the San Jose, CA Area.
My Name is Mark Spilmon. I'm an aging baby boomer and a proud US Navy veteran (12 years total service: 6 active + 6 reserves), who has worked 20 years in Silicon Valley Technology before becoming displaced during the early part of the millennium by what became known locally as the 'dot-com bust' (At that time I was working for SUN Microsystems (the creator of the JAVA programming technology)). I then transitioned from a successful career as a reasonably competent code hacker to be a driver for a series of transportation companies. This sent me on miserable displacement to live in Las Vegas in Oct. of 2002, and I returned to the SF Bay Area in Jan. 2016 through a failed job offer. I began driving for UBER and Lyft in Mar. 2016 and became sick again with diabetes. (It was the third time that my blood sugar (A1c) had gone over the 6.5 threshold since 1997). In May of this year (2018), my glycated hemoglobin (A1c) had reached a shocking level of 11.1, and my doctor was threatening to put me on insulin therapy.
OK, so many of you may understandably be unaware that insulin is commonly referred to as 'the body's fat storage hormone, and because it can cause a hypoglycemic state where a person's brain gets too little sugar, it may cause an Uber driver, like me, to pass out. And, of course not everyone is aware that every two years, commercial drivers holding a CDL license must pass a DOT physical, and if you're prescribed a medication like insulin, you usually don't pass the physical as regulated by the Federal Department of Transportation. UBER and Lyft do not adhere to the Federal DOT guidelines for commercial drivers, but neither does a Taxi company because you're not required to have a commercial license.
No thanks to our wonderfully mis-crafted Obama care program, (which threatened taxation should I fail to obtain health coverage regardless of its affordability,) I was a pressed by a worry that began looming heavily over my head upon my return to Northern California in January of 2016 about obtaining Affordable Care.
Fortunately, I was guided to get help from the Veterans Administration with an assignment of a General Practitioner at the Palo Alto VA medical facility. It's a serviceman related congressional entitlement which I will be eternally grateful for.
So with my A1c level at 11.1, (and with the confidence of my Doctor's 30 years of practice, as well as the present medical dogma that "diabetes is an incurable and progressive disease" which most patients have brought unto themselves,) my VA doctor indicated that general practice for treating a patient with my level of blood sugar, was to put them on insulin.
But, from what I had already learned about diabetes, and from my own personal experience, was that this was absolutely the wrong thing to do to someone who still had functioning beta cells in their pancreas. Therefore, based on my objection to this doctor's suggested treatment with insulin, I was put on a drug called glipizide and then sent on to see a VA Pharmacist on May 7, 2018. After revealing that I had often skipped my evening dosage of metformin, (due to job hour fatigue,) I was then put on a once a day type of extended metformin medication in which I was required to take a dosage of two pills every morning. And, we also discussed what I should do if my blood sugar level dropped to a point where I was becoming hypoglycemic.
Thoroughly amazing to the staff at the VA was that three weeks later, I had lost 10 lbs and my blood sugar was low enough that the Pharmacist and I decided that taking the Glipizide would not be good for me going forward, and I was advised to discontinue the dosage. This was June 7, 2018, and also because it had taken the Pharmacist by surprise, he began to ask me a myriad of questions regarding my diet and exercise routine. So thus began my YouTube Video Log was starting on June 21, 2018, in which I show what types of foods were eaten and what little or no additional therapeutic physical, metabolic lifting exercises were performed to get to an A1c of 6.1 on August 20, 2018 ( And, I had lost over 35 lbs). I also began to consider a significant shift in my career path towards using my knowledge about weight reduction through the Hippocratic concept that goes "Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.”
This was not precisely a diet, but to be totally clear, it was a lifestyle change that included intermittent nutritional fasting. Suddenly, in my mind, there was a paradigm shift about becoming a registered dietitian which seemed very doable to me. I had now gained enough knowledge on weight loss that it only made sense to begin working on a career as a registered weight loss dietitian. (The heck with competing to gain a hacking job in a realm of irreverent narcissistic youngster type of Silicon Valley egotists.)
You could say it was an epiphany for this now faded Silicon Valley Technologist.
Yesterday, Sep. 4, 2018, I started at SJCC on a transfer program for entry into the Nutrition Sciences Program at San Jose State. (I have even reached out to Professor Christopher D. Gardner at Stanford University to inquire about joining his research group for the necessary RD internship, following the meeting of his ex-wife on one of my regular Uber trips).
So, why the endeavor to create this web site about growing vegetables in my apartment and my tips on healthy weight maintenance?
Face it at 60 y/o, I'm no longer out to conquer the world nor do I wish to reinvent the wheel, but I am hoping that I may gain a small amount of notoriety as a friendly adviser for those struggling with a reversible metabolic syndrome like diabetes. Thus the Sep 5, 2018 birth of this business attempt and web site. My near term scale-up plans are to continue my quest for DIY YouTube reference videos, researching NIH PubMed Studies library, refine my skills in hydroponics, focusing on business web-based development, and create my own self-documenting video logs. I then wish to attempt setting up a display stand at the local Saturday farmer's market to sell some of the grown produce, and possibly setting up a few short seminars locally to teach the frugal-ness of this type of nutritional lifestyle.
Thank you very much for visiting this site, and may God bless.
Mark A Spilmon
1. Some words are linked to reference resources to assist the reader with my semantics.
2. All of the necessary contact info can be found on this sites' contact page, but if necessary, you use the following link to email me.
EMAIL Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Photo taken 7 March 2019
Dr. Wong, "Yes, Mr Spilmon you're living proof that type 2 diabetes is curable. How long will it take now to get your board certificate, so we can put you to work here at the VA?"
I'm his first patient to do so in thirty years of practice