Posted by Keith Reed
GUESTS:  Rick Boerjesson (future member); Bob Yale (estate planner and guest of Bill Leske and Mark Kotz); and Mike Buscher (Director of Operations at WCH). Chuck Norton gave the “thought of the day”, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance.  President Tom Nash reported that Dr. John Stone was celebrating 37 years as a Rotarian and that he is now in Florida rehabbing from his recent fall, but is progressing fine.
ANNOUNCEMENTS:  Tom reported that our District’s Winter Training/Grant Management Seminar will be held on Feb. 17th from 8:00-3:00 PM at Harper College (Wojcik Center) in Palatine.  He also announced that on March 11, the Wilmette Rotary Club is organizing a group to see a matinee performance of New Trier High School’s  “Once Upon a Mattress” and an optional dinner thereafter.  Cost of the play ticket is $12.50,  the  dinner will be $30-35 and held at Zhivago’s, next to Schaeffer’s on Gross Point Road.  Reservations should be made fairly soon through Tom.   Tom announced that our February 15th speaker will be Jeffery G. Shepard on the timely subject of ”What is all about Bitcoin.”  He also said that Joe Nash was going to help us with another “guest bartender” night at Little Ricky’s on March 8 to benefit Kids Against Hunger and that raffle items are needed. Tom said that Patti and John Thomas have arranged for a “ fireside chat” of new Rotary members from 5:00 to 6:30 PM on February 13th at the Nielsen Tennis Center’s new lounge (complete with fireplace), which is the room  next to the check-in desk. Rotary membership and our rules/traditions will be explained and all  members are encouraged to come to get better acquainted with the new members. Refreshments and hors d’oeuvres   will be provided.  Tom also reported that our Club is trying to sponsor three high school students for Rotary’s RYLA program (Rotary Youth Leadership Awards) this year. New Trier faculty member Anna Helfman is helping us locate New Trier students, and students from other area high schools are also welcomed to apply.  When it was announced that the cost to the Club will be $350 per student, donations from the audience started to come in led by Tom Nash, Felicia O’Malley, Mike Shelton, Rich Lalley and Liz Taylor.  These donations can be made to the Club’s Foundation for a tax deduction.  David Birkenstein reported that in 2018, charitable donations won’t be allowed unless total allowable deductions exceed $24,000—but that those over age 70 who have to withdraw funds from their IRAs can designate part of such withdrawal to a charity and not have to pay income tax on that amount.
HAPPY BUCKS: Wes Baumann gave for Ned Meisner providing  piano music before our meeting; Arlynn Presser was happy that her defective micro wave made it through the night without exploding; Patti said she was happy that she got back safely from her UK and Houston trips and that there is still a lot of cleanup that needs to be done after the Houston flood; Mark Kotz and Ned Meisner gave to recognize all the good work John Thomas does for such groups as the WYO, which recently had a successful open house after their water problem.
Brooke Peppey gave the “dig and grin” and then David Birkenstein introduced the speaker for the day.
SPEAKER JILL KEENON:  Jill is an RN, BSN, Certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach and the Mother of 12 children (8 adopted), 30 grandchildren and many foster children.  Her husband was a recent Club speaker on the world’s refugee problem.  They live in the western suburbs and have lived very giving and inspirational lives.  Jill explained that she took care of her grandmother and her mother who both suffered for years from dementia.  Ten years ago at age 50, Jill was tested positive for the APOE4 gene which indicates that her children stand a 50/50 chance of also being affected by dementia. At that time she decided to learn all she could about the disease and to do whatever was possible to keep herself healthy enough to take care of the people who depended on her.
The first thing she did to compensate for being “overweight and under exercised” was to start eating ½ of her normal intake.  Jill presented such information as Alzheimer’s disease is a type of dementia and makes up about 70% of all dementias; 1 in 3 seniors die from dementia; it is the 6th leading cause of death; signs of dementia are difficulty managing personal finances, getting lost, changes in sleep patterns, feeling depressed, repeating stories and forgetting about one’s own personal history.  Things that lead to poor brain health are too many trans fats and high fructose corn syrup; sugar overload; obesity; bad gut health; less than 6 hours sleep a night; depression; hormonal changes; certain prescription drugs need checking such as statins and acid reflux drugs; and excess gluten. Some of the things suggested to improve chances of avoiding dementia problems are eating brain food like olive oil, nuts, citrus fruit, fish, chocolate, berries, apples with the peel, probiotics and beetjuice; add coconut oil, avocados, vegetables and lean meats to your diets and less grains; check your vision; exercise your body and mind; check your thyroid and hormonal balance; monitor conditions like diabetes and heart disease; consider taking Vitamin D and B12;  consider consulting with  a reputable “health coach” or a specialist in anti-aging metabolic medicine;  and review numerous natural supplements that may improve brain health. Jill concluded her remarks by saying that “everyone should fight for health so that the part of your life that really matters is filled with energy, joy and peace in the good and the hard times.  The key to this possibility is your personal decision and that you should choose prevention no matter what stage of life you are in.”
Jill’s 20 page power point has great information about the disease and is a must read for anyone interested in the topic.  It can be accessed by clicking on this link: