Brain fog is cognitive dysfunction involving memory lapses, lack of mental clarity, focus, and concentration as well as mental fatigue. Depending on the severity of brain fog, it can interfere with work or school.
What causes brain fog?
- Chronic stress can cause mental fatigue. When your brain is exhausted, it becomes harder to think, reason, and focus.
- Poor sleep quality which doesn’t allow your brain to properly detoxify (glymphatics)
- Hormonal changes during pregnancy (baby brain) can affect memory and cause short-term cognitive impairment. Peri/menopause – causing drops in progesterone and estrogen – can cause forgetfulness, poor concentration, and cloudy thinking.
Omega3, Vitamin D, Magnesium, and B-12 deficiencies can cause brain fog. If you have food allergies or sensitivities, brain fog may develop after eating certain foods. Possible culprits include:
- MSG, artificial sweeteners, peanuts (due to aflatoxin), dairy, and gluten can be triggers.
Brain fog may be a known side effect of some medications including chemotherapy (chemo brain). Talk to your prescribing doctor. Getting tested can help identify underlying issues. Blood work can help your doctor identify the cause of brain fog. A blood test can detect the following:
- abnormal glucose levels
- abnormal O2 levels
- poor liver, kidney, and thyroid function
- nutritional deficiencies
- inflammatory diseases
How to combat brain fog and create more brain clarity?
- Try intermittent fasting
- Drink beet juice with ginger
- Sleeping 8 to 9 hours per night with optimal sleep hygiene
- Manage stress by knowing your limitations and avoiding excessive alcohol and caffeine
- Intense exercising
- Strengthening brain power (try solving brain puzzles or playing new board games as a family)
- Support your brain-gut connection by increasing essential fats, quality protein, fruits, vegetables, and soluble fiber (consider high quality probiotics)
- Forest bathe (spend time in the outdoors)
- Vagus Nerve Stimulation: hot & cold hydrotherapy
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