Do you struggle to think clearly? Ever feel fuzzy and heavy in the head?
You could be experiencing ‘brain fog’, which often comes with confusion, forgetfulness and a lack of mental clarity. It’s a lot more common than you think – in fact, patients tell me they experience it on a daily basis.
So what causes it? There are 10 key reasons…
1. Eating the wrong foods –
When you eat excess sugar and carbohydrates, it causes your blood sugar to spike then drop. This is when brain fog strikes.
Low-fat diets have also been linked to brain fog in some people
Nutritional deficiencies in B12, Vitamin D, Omega-3s and Magnesium can all lead to fuzzy minds
2. Food intolerances and allergies – when you food that your body is sensitive to, it can often cause inflammation in the brain, leading to brain fog. Wheat and gluten are one of the most common causes of brain fog that I see, due to this gut-brain sensitivity.
3. Food additives and artificial sweeteners – those little numbers on the back of the packet are quite harmful to chemically-sensitive people. MSG and Aspartame are two of the most common culprits to look out for.
4. Dehydration – our brain is the second most sensitive organ to dehydration, after the liver. Drinking more is such a simple fix for brain fog, yet I see people every day who don’t drink their 2 litres!
5. Lack of sleep – the brain restores and resets itself every night while you are asleep, which is why getting 8 hours is crucial. Chronic sleep deprivation and insomnia are major contributors to brain fog.
6. Stress – high levels of of the stress hormone cortisol can interfere with the way your brain functions and increase your risk of more serious brain disorders like Alzheimer’s.
7. Lack of exercise – exercise gives you endorphins, which are anti-inflammatory to the brain and help to burn off excess cortisol.
8. Toxins in your home – we’re told to use thousands of different chemicals to keep our homes clean, but this “chemical overload” can have a negative effect on your brain health. As well as cleaning products, watch out for mould, dander from animals and chemicals released from your new furniture (you know the smell!).
9. Underlying health conditions – a huge range of medical conditions can give you brain fog, including Fibromyalgia (known as ‘Fibro Fog’), chronic fatigue, thyroid disorders, ADHD, adrenal fatigue, anxiety, candida, depression, diabetes, IBS, hormonal imbalances and menopause.
10. Medication – unfortunately, sometimes medication used to treat serious illnesses can result in brain fog as a side-effect. If you’ve ever had someone in your life go through chemotherapy, you might know this as ‘Chemo Brain’. Statins (for cholesterol) and sleeping pills are also some of the many medications known to cause brain fog.
If you would like to speak to one of our Naturopaths to find out how you can recover from brain fog, you can book a FREE 15 minute phone appointment today by calling (02) 4961 4075.
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