“Brain fog” is a term used to describe certain symptoms that can affect your ability to think, focus, and remember information. Those experiencing brain fog may feel confused or disoriented and find it hard to translate their thoughts into words. While brain fog is not a medical condition, it can have significant effects on the quality of your day-to-day life, such as decreasing the quality of your work and causing you severe mental fatigue.
Many people experience brain fog occasionally, and some even suffer from it as a chronic condition. Pinpointing the cause(s) of brain fog can be difficult, as it may be due to a wide range of lifestyle problems, medical conditions, and more. In this blog post, we explore five potential causes of brain fog and achievable ways of combating them. For even more information on optimizing your brain health, check back on the BIPRI blog frequently and browse our selection of brain health and performance supplements, programs, tools, superfood, and more.
As society continues to get more and more fast-paced, incidences of insomnia among American adults are on the rise. According to the National Sleep Foundation, roughly 30% of the general population complains of sleep disruption, and approximately 10% have associated symptoms of daytime functional impairment, such as brain fog, consistent with the diagnosis of insomnia.
If you’re on the millions of Americans suffering from insomnia, help is available. Some treatment options that experts recommend are cognitive behavioral therapy, progressive muscle relaxation, breathing exercises, biofeedback, and basic lifestyle changes, such as avoiding daytime naps, exercising regularly, and limiting your use of caffeine. Many of our customers also benefit from our Relaxed Brain supplement, which includes natural ingredients such as bacopa, phellodendron, and magnolia, which may help to promote sleep. We also recommend our 4-Motor Headband vibration therapy device, designed to promote relaxation and stress relief.
Vitamin B-12 Deficiency
Consuming enough Vitamin B-12 each day is essential for maintaining optimal brain health. Vitamin B-12 deficiency can lead to anemia, as well as nerve and brain damage, which may manifest in brain fog, memory difficulties, insomnia, fatigue, depression, numbness or tingling in the extremities, and other symptoms. If left untreated, this damage could become irreversible.
Individuals over the age of 60 carry a higher risk of B-12 deficiency than younger folks. People with digestive issues, such as IBS, IBD, and celiac disk, also carry a higher risk, as well as vegetarians and vegans. Fortunately, increasing your daily intake of Vitamin B-12 isn’t difficult. The easiest and most effective way of increasing your B-12 intake is by eating foods that are naturally rich in the vitamin. These include:
- Milk and fortified nondairy milk
- Fortified breakfast cereals
- Chicken breast
If you find yourself struggling with B-12 deficiency even after eating these foods, then B-12 supplements are also available.
Hormonal changes, such as pregnancy and menopause, can also trigger brain fog. During pregnancy, levels of the hormones progesterone and estrogen increase significantly, often causing cognitive impairment. Menopause, on the other hand, causes these hormones to decrease, often leading to symptoms such as forgetfulness, poor concentration, and cloudy thinking.
This is why it’s especially important for women undergoing menopause, which usually occurs around the age of 50, to be proactive about preventing brain fog. One of the easiest ways to do this is maintain a well-balanced diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids and other unsaturated fats. It is also important to get enough rest, and regularly exercise both your body and mind. Our BrainHQ brain training platform allows you to play fun, interesting brain games to help keep you sharp and focused, even during menopause, pregnancy, and other hormonal changes.
Certain medications may also trigger brain fog, especially those known as anticholinergics. The medications work by the action of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine (ACh) in the brain in order to treat a variety of different medical conditions, such as vertigo, diarrhea, short-term insomnia, asthma, and more. Unfortunately, in addition to combating these conditions, these medications also may come with a variety of negative side effects, the most significant ones being brain fog and delirium, particularly in the elderly. Common anticholinergics include oxybutynin (Ditropan) for overactive bladder, amitriptyline (Elavil) for depressio, and diphenhydramine (Benadryl) for allergies and short-term insomnia.
Chemotherapy is another common culprit of brain fog, which some people call “chemo brain.” Fortunately, in most cases chemo brain clears after you finish your cancer treatment. If you suspect that one or several of these medications are causing your brain fog, talk to your doctor about lowering your dose or switching to one of the natural, pharmacist-formulated supplements that we offer here at BIPRI. We offer supplements for both children and adults.
Medical conditions commonly associated with inflammation, fatigue, or changes in blood sugar levels can also cause brain fog. This is why it’s a good idea to visit a doctor as soon as possible if you find yourself experiencing chronic forgetfulness and concentration issues. Medical conditions that can cause brain fog include:
- Multiple sclerosis
- Chronic fatigue syndrome
- Alzheimer’s disease
While unfortunately many of these conditions do not have any treatment, they may be improved through a combination of medications and lifestyle changes.
Combat Brain Fog for Good With BIPRI
Suffering from brain fog can be devastating, but, fortunately, help is available. At BIPRI, we offer a variety of different tools, supplements, superfoods, programs, and more for helping you achieve optimal brain health. Ready to get started? Shop our products or get in touch with or schedule your free 15-minute brain wellness consultation today.