We looked at what brain fog is, what the symptoms of brain fog look like and how it is caused. We then go on to look at how to get rid of brain fog fast using science-based methods and recommend some dietary supplements to help get your brain functioning again.
Have you wondered why all of a sudden you have a foggy cloud over your brain? Are you struggling to focus and gain mental clarity? This could be a case of brain fog which is usually caused by a stressful lifestyle, a poor diet, and lack of sleep.
Luckily, we have written this article to tell you a little more about the condition and how it is caused, as well as take a look at the best science-based methods of clearing it as fast as possible so you can get back to those complex tasks in no time.
With a simple lifestyle change and maybe an added dietary supplement, most people find brain fog clears faster than they think, so what are you waiting for? Let’s jump right in.
What is Brain Fog?
Brain fog is when your brain goes fuzzy. We are all prone, in modern life to headaches, reduced consciousness, and a reduced ability to remain focused. This cloudy condition in the human brain is called brain fog and it means your memory and your cognitive functions have deteriorated.
brain fog isn’t classified as an actual medical condition, yet is a syndrome that can cause upset and stress in the daily lives of people, especially those in busy cities or on busy schedules. It can severely affect a person’s cognitive abilities and their task performance and if it isn’t addressed, can cause them to fall behind in work.
Occasional cloudy moments might be common for some, but when this becomes chronic and an everyday occurrence, it can even be detrimental to someone’s image and self-esteem, causing them to lose confidence in themselves.
Brain fog combines cognitive fatigue issues, lack of judgment, and memory function impairment. However, there is a range of other problems to look out for which may suggest someone is experiencing brain fog. These include:
- Unable to store new information or recall old information
- Impairments in understanding and using languages
- Unable to calculate and resolve problems
- Mental confusion
- Deterioration of brain functions which recognize shapes, help you plot charts, and direct you to destinations
- Sleeping disorders
- Lack of concentration
- Issues planning and organizing weekly schedules
- Abnormal exercise sessions
What are the Symptoms of Brain Fog?
Brain fog can not only affect one’s mental health but also physical health. The physical symptoms to look out for are eye disorders, gastrointestinal dysfunction, and stomach pain, chronic tiredness, and low energy levels, a decrease in metabolism, and headaches.
When it comes to mental symptoms, however, these include irritable behavior, sleeping disorders such as insomnia, inability to focus and concentrate, lack of memory and forgetfulness, lack of motivation, and fresh ideas. Moreover, you could lose your creativity levels and social skills if brain fog is left untreated.
What Causes Brain Fog?
Not having enough sleep, experiencing stressful situations, or even eating too many refined carbohydrates can cause temporary brain fog. But what are the common causes that induce brain fog regularly?
Stress and Anxiety
Stress plays a major role in experiencing brain fog as high levels of stress and anxiety can increase the blood levels of cortisol and adrenaline. Stress can be caused by internal or external factors and if it occurs on a prolonged basis, can be the route of many other health problems.
To relieve stress, it’s important to find time to relax and unwind, move your body and take time out for breathing exercises or meditation to reduce anxiety levels.
Having an underactive thyroid can slow down certain body processes from digestion to brain function. Your thyroid might be underactive as a result of your pituitary gland not working properly and not being able to send enough TSH to your thyroid. Or it might be that your thyroid is not producing enough T4 and T3 to fuel your cells.
An underactive thyroid can slow down metabolic processes which can cause symptoms such as brain fog and if this is what you think is causing your brain fog, it’s vital you see a doctor so they can test for hypothyroidism.
Medications or Cancer Treatment
Certain medications can be the culprit of brain fog. Allergy medications can cause common brain fog as they block neurotransmitters in the brain. These include medications that contain diphenhydramine such as Benadryl, Ditropan used for an overactive bladder and Elavil used to treat depression.
Moreover, cancer treatments such as chemotherapy, radiation therapy, immunotherapy, and a bone marrow transplant can cause brain fog. Cancer treatments are known for causing complications such as fatigue, hormonal imbalances, and problems with sleep. This, as a result, affects brain function.
Diet and Sleep
A person's diet or vitamin deficiencies can cause brain fog as they play a vital role in brain function. Obvious foods which affect the brain include alcohol and caffeine and these can cause symptoms related to anxiety and stress.
However, other common foods that could cause brain fog include foods high in MSG, aspartame, dairy products, and peanuts. Moreover, if you are on a high-fat diet such as keto and your body shifts to ketosis, this could cause temporary brain fog. This is because the lack of carbohydrates reduces glucose and this is what fuels your brain activity.
Blood glucose levels give you cognitive clarity, improve your attention span and help you focus. Therefore, it’s also important to not deprive yourself of sugar.
Vitamin deficiencies, especially a vitamin B12 deficiency can cause brain fog symptoms. This is because vitamin B12 supports the nervous system's functioning and healthy red blood cell production.
Not getting enough sleep can also cause brain fog and if you are getting less than 7 hours a night, this could mean your brain has difficulty functioning properly. Getting enough sleep can also improve your memory, focus, and overall concentration.
Hormonal changes such as pregnancy, perimenopause, and menopause are all part of a woman’s healthy life. However, these can cause brain fog.
Estrogen and progesterone levels are increased during pregnancy and similarly, women in perimenopause and after experiencing menopause can be found to have abnormally high levels of these hormones. The hormonal imbalances can impact brain fog, initiate sleep problems, and give you hot flushes.
Estrogen is thought to improve communication to the brain and is related to memory and processing new information. It can also promote the growth and survival of the neurons which send messages and signals to your brain. Therefore, during hormonal changes such as during pregnancy and menopause, the chances of experiencing brain fog are increased.
How Do I Get Rid of Brain Fog?
Getting rid of brain fog is a topic that has been studied by scientists and researchers for years and methods range from simply making healthy lifestyle changes to adding psychostimulants to a person's routine. It’s important if you are experiencing chronic brain fog, you know how to get rid of it.
To experience mental clarity and improve focus and concentration, you need to start by identifying what may be causing this brain fog. Once identified, you can begin to explore solutions to correct it and fix the problem.
Some of these solutions include:
Improving Your Diet
Improving your diet can cause your brain to function again. If you are not eating enough food throughout the day, or you aren't eating enough of the right foods, this can be the cause of your brain fog.
Fast foods, refined carbohydrates, caffeine, artificial sweeteners, and alcohol have been commonly linked to brain fog and therefore by switching up your diet if you regularly consume these foods, could help clear it.
You could try following an autoimmune diet and eliminating toxic and inflammatory foods. Replacing these foods with nutrient-dense foods instead and ensuring you get enough vitamins is what we would recommend in helping clear brain fog.
Adding Exercise to Your Daily Routine
We all know how exercise can improve mood, however, the psychological benefits of exercise go beyond this. Cardiovascular exercise is known to be linked to neurogenesis which is the growth of new brain cells and is therefore thought to improve the overall health of the brain. However, be careful not to overexercise as this can worsen cases of brain fog.
Getting a good night’s sleep can clear brain fog and improve your overall mood and wellbeing. It can also help with a whole range of other health problems such as lowering your risk of diabetes and heart disease.
Getting at least 7 hours of sleep a night is recommended to allow your hormones in the brain to remain balanced. Therefore, if you feel like you are experiencing brain fog, struggling to stay focused and concentrate, or even having a hard time keeping up a conversation with someone, this could be a sign you’re not getting your 7 hours.
If you find getting enough sleep tricky, you could try various methods to improve this and these methods relate to diet. Eating foods rich in tryptophan, magnesium, and melatonin can help, eliminating fatty foods, foods high in proteins, caffeine and over-the-counter medications can help and you could even try introducing herbal supplements to make you feel more tired.
You could also adopt the multiple sleeping sessions a day model. This means you include several sleep intervals of around 30 minutes throughout the day. If you have the time and equipment for this at home or in the office, we would highly recommend it to reverse symptoms of brain fog fast.
Acupuncture is a technique that alleviates pain in the body. However, it can also balance out the chemicals in your brain. Starting acupuncture has been proven to improve cognitive abilities whilst also helping people reduce stress and anxiety.
Focus on Reducing Stress
Stress is a common part of the modern world and it’s not as simple as it seems to simply take yourself out of the stressful situation. However, a way to alleviate this stress would be to take time out of your busy schedule to do something you love.
Doing something you love releases dopamine which is also known as the ‘happy hormone’ in the brain, and thus can reduce stress naturally.
Other activities known to reduce stress would be meditating, meeting with friends, spending time outdoors, and getting enough exercise.
Seek Medical Help
If you are pregnant, entering perimenopause, or being treated for cancer, hormone imbalances, or depression, you must talk to a doctor about how your medicine could be disrupting a healthy brain function and potentially causing your brain fog. If you fail to treat a hormone imbalance, it can be equally damaging, however.
Spending Time Outdoors
Spending time outdoors can clear your brain and restore your energy. Nature helps people cope with busy schedules and can even better oxygenate their brain cells so they can work and function properly for another busy and stressful week.
To clear brain fog, it’s a good idea to know if your body is getting enough of the right vitamins each day.
Vitamin B-12 helps produce serotonin in the brain and therefore can reduce stress and clear your foggy brain.
Vitamin C can also cause antioxidant actions in your brain cells and vitamin E is efficient in oxidation reactions on the brain. Vitamin K can induce the production of sphingolipids, which are present in the cell membrane of your nerve cells. These lipids help your brain function properly
Therefore also adding vitamin C, vitamin E, and vitamin K to your diet can help clear brain fog.
This might be a new term to a lot of readers yet it simply means you are given some feedback on the brain waves that occur through your brain.
A professional will need to hook your brain up to an EEG (electroencephalograph) and observe each brain wave. If these are abnormal, the professional will help you fix the problem.
Neurofeedback also works by giving you positive feedback when you produce a certain brain wave and helps you to ‘learn’ to naturally create that feeling.
If your brain waves are slower than average in different parts of the brain, you can use entertainment as an option to cure the brain fog. However, this will only work with certain people. Isochronic tones are also able to stimulate the production of beta waves, which can help treat mental fogginess which is associated with low arousal.
Taking stimulants can also be a way of clearing brain fog. Stimulants such as Ritalin, Adderall, and Vyvanse help with clearing brain fog fast, This is because they increase the amount of dopamine in the brain and stimulate the central nervous system. This means your mental alertness will increase, along with improved cognitive ability.
If you suffer from ADHD or another condition that results in psychomotor slowing or tiredness and fatigue, a doctor might be able to recommend a psychostimulant. These can also cure brain fog, but should only be used for severe forms of the condition when other methods fail to work.
Medicinal treatments include iron supplements, corticosteroids, and prescription drugs. Iron supplements help the overproduction of red blood cells and help restore normal oxygenation to your brain tissue, corticosteroids help reduce inflammation and improve fatigue or cognitive symptoms and prescription drugs such as donepezil can help with memory loss and mental stress.
There are also diet supplements out there that can help you out if you feel these might benefit you and help alleviate brain fog, they are science-based and easy to add into your morning routine.
The vitamins we suggested in the previous section are a great addition to your diet to help clear brain fog but supplements such as L-Tyrosine, Omega-3, Zinc, Fatty Acids, Magnesium, and Vitamin B6 can also help.
In this next section, we are going to recommend our favorite dietary supplements on the market right now.
Mind Lab Pro
Mind Lab Pro was designed to be introduced to your daily routine to get rid of brain fog fast and improve mental alertness whether that be at work, on the weekends, or in every other area of your life.
It promises to unlock your ‘A’ game and help you on your way to creativity and confidence. It is rated number one for improving general focus, clarity, mood, and long-range brain health, and with over one million bottles sold across six continents, you’re guaranteed great results.
It has also been subjected to rigorous double-blind, placebo-controlled trials where the results included a high degree of statistical significance. Simply take 2-4 capsules a day and in just 30 minutes, you should notice a sharper focus, increased alertness, clarity of thought, and a brighter mood.
- Works in just 30 minutes
- Rapidly improves alertness and concentration
- Sustainable and natural
- 100% stimulant-free, safe and effective
- Effects will increase as you take the supplement overtime
- Possible side effects include headaches, nausea, and disturbed sleep.
The Alpha Brain supplement promises to improve memory and focus and provide you with daily cognitive support. It also helps improve mental speed and clears brain fog fast.
It is a nootropic dietary supplement that helps you get back in the ‘zone’ and improve your concentration. This means you will be able to react more quickly to situations, think more clearly under stress, remember names and places and focus on those complex tasks you have been putting off.
Moreover, it is gluten-free, dairy-free, keto, paleo, made without caffeine, and nut-free, and made with clinically-tested nootropic ingredients.
- Improves mental clarity
- Gets you back in the ‘zone’
- Makes more alpha waves and supports the production of neurotransmitters
- Safe and effective
- Healthy ingredients
- Takes a couple of weeks to take effect
We hope by reading this article you have gained a better understanding of what brain fog is and how to clear it fast using science-based methods as well as seeking medical help or adding dietary supplements to your daily routine.
Changing your way of life is the best way of clearing brain fog, whilst supplements and adapting your diet can also help you find a balance in your nervous system.
If after altering your way of life and diet you still find yourself struggling with brain fog, it’s vital you speak to a doctor and ask for his recommendation of treatment as he will have a full patient profile.
For most people, however, lifestyle changes will mean your brain is back to functioning clearly and normally within a few weeks. It’s then it’s a case of keeping those stress levels low, eating healthy, getting enough sleep, and adding exercise into your daily routine.