You got out of bed this morning all groggy. You figured you just needed to wake up and have your first cup of coffee and that soon you’d feel better. Yet several hours have passed and you’re still very out of it. Is this brain fog you’re dealing with? What does brain fog feel like?
Brain fog leads to haziness as you’re trying to complete activities. You may also be forgetful, have a hard time focusing, and feel tired. The keto diet is a good treatment for brain fog, especially if your diet is rich in MCT oil. Between MCT and the high levels of fat you consume, you’ll experience greater clarity.
If you’re looking for even more information on brain fog, we recommend you keep reading. Ahead, we’ll talk about what brain fog is, what causes it, and what it feels like.
We’ll also discuss the keto diet and other treatments for feeling clear-headed and enjoying your own life again!
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What Is Brain Fog and What Does It Feel Like?
Everyone has those days where you just didn’t sleep enough and you’re trying to drag yourself through your obligations so you can go home and get to bed early. Yet imagine feeling like that every single day, or at least most days.
If you do, you may have brain fog.
Although brain fog isn’t a true medical condition, something is still wrong with your physical and/or mental health. Brain fog robs you of your ability to be focused and present in your own life. You feel like you’re on autopilot or sleepwalking. You’re getting things done, but not to your standards.
Here are some symptoms of brain fog that many who have it report experiencing.
Difficulty Expressing Yourself
Some people are better at the written word than the spoken word, but even those people can string together the right words to make a sentence. You have a hard time doing that sometimes. The words just don’t come out as intended, or you know which word you want to say but you can’t find it. It’s right there on the tip of your tongue, then it disappears.
Reduced Spatial and Visual Skills
Almost everyone has spatial skills, which are those that allow you to anticipate what spatial relationships exist between two objects. These skills give you spatial awareness. For example, when you put your pen on your work desk, spatial awareness tells you that the pen is on, not under, the desk.
Visual skills go hand-in-hand with spatial awareness. The information that passes through your eyes to your brain has meaning thanks to your visual abilities. In other words, you can tell that your pen is a pen and your desk is a desk.
With impacted spatial and visual skills due to brain fog, you might find yourself tripping over things, bumping into things, and dropping things far more often than you usually do.
Lowered Calculating and Problem-Solving Abilities
Your boss asks you to tally up the company expenses for the month. Usually, this is no big deal, with your brain fog as of late, the task takes you far longer to do than it should. You also have to triple-check your math because you have serious doubts about your calculating abilities right now.
Not only that, but your problem-solving skills are out the window. If you have a complex work task in front of you, you feel lost for the answer almost immediately. What’s worse, you have no idea how to even figure out what the answer could be.
Feeling Disoriented or Confused
You also notice that you don’t feel as mentally sharp as you once did. Sometimes when you’re sitting at work and even at home, you have this disoriented feeling. When you listen to someone talk, you find that you have a hard time following the flow of conversation without getting confused.
Concentration and Memory Issues
Admittedly, you can’t concentrate for very long these days. You remember when you could dedicate yourself to a task for hours at a time with few breaks in between. Now it seems like every couple of minutes, you get distracted or forget what you were doing.
On that note, your memory has been awful too. You can hardly remember what you ate for breakfast this morning or what day it is.
What Causes Brain Fog?
Brain fog is not something to ignore, especially if you’ve been dealing with yours for a while. Although it’s not an official medical condition, brain fog can be indicative of other conditions. In other instances, its causes are more benign.
Here is the long list of what may be contributing to your brain fog.
The autoimmune inflammatory disease lupus causes your immune system to go after otherwise healthy tissue. The condition can affect the entire body, including your lungs, heart, brain, blood cells, kidneys, skin, and joints.
Besides symptoms such as fever, rash, joint pain, and fatigue, lupus can also affect your concentration abilities and cause confusion and forgetfulness. Although lupus is incurable, medications may reduce symptom severity.
Lack of Sleep
Are you getting at least seven hours of sleep per night as an adult? If you answered no, then your brain fog could be tied to lack of sleep. To help you get in a sleepy mood, put the smartphone down about an hour before bedtime, stop consuming caffeine by the afternoon, don’t eat before bed, and create a cool, dark environment in your bedroom.
Some symptoms of brain fog–including problem-solving difficulties and forgetfulness–could be tied to depression. If you have a family history of depression and you’ve been feeling unmotivated and sluggish, it’s worth seeing a mental health professional for a checkup.
Stress is an everyday part of our lives, but some people have more stress than others. Failing to mitigate stress can make it chronic. At that point, you’re at risk of depression, lower immune functioning, and high blood pressure. These conditions individually and especially when put together could lead to brain fog.
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Your brain fog could be from a case of chronic fatigue syndrome, a condition that affects women more than men. With chronic fatigue syndrome, you may experience symptoms like weakness, anxiety, forgetfulness, concentration difficulties, fatigue, and muscle and joint pain.
Although medical experts aren’t sure what causes chronic fatigue syndrome, it could be due to genetics or your environment. You must feel excessively tired for upwards of six months to have chronic fatigue syndrome.
As women get closer to their 50s, they may begin menopause. During menopause, a woman’s menstrual cycle stops, but she can experience hot flashes and brain fog. Medication could reduce brain fog, as can some hormonal supplements.
Taking Certain Medications
If you just started a new medication or you recently adjusted your dosage, it may be your medication that’s making you feel foggy. That can include cancer treatments. This side effect of treatment is known as chemo brain, which makes multitasking hard and causes forgetfulness.
Another immune condition, multiple sclerosis changes how your body and brain communicate. Some symptoms are coordination issues, fatigue, pain, and vision loss. Although multiple sclerosis affects everyone differently, you may notice that your language, planning, attention, and memory abilities are impacted.
Pregnancy brain is a real phenomenon that women experience as their pregnancy progresses. Your chemical makeup changes when you carry a baby, often at the expense of your memory. This change is temporary and your memory should come back in full force at some point after your pregnancy ends.
How you fuel your body also plays a major role in how mentally clear you feel. If your diet is low in vitamin B12 especially, you’re more likely to have brain fog. Consuming a diet high in dairy, peanuts, aspartame, and MSG could also make you feel forgetful and tired.
How Do You Know If You Have Brain Fog?
How can you be sure whether you’re just having a bad week or if you’re dealing with a case of brain fog? The duration of your symptoms is one such indicator. If you’re sleeping well but you still feel like you’re a background character in your own life and it’s been that way for weeks or months, you could have brain fog.
You can also get a confirmation through your doctor. They’ll run a blood test to check your thyroid, kidney, and liver functioning.
How Can You Treat or Reduce Brain Fog?
Brain fog affects your personal life and your work life. If your work performance suffers long enough, it can be your job on the line. At home, you don’t even have enough energy to commit to your favorite activities, which leaves you feeling empty.
It’s worth treating brain fog, especially if yours is severely impacting your life.
Here are some options we recommend.
Get on the Keto Diet
The keto diet is a great way to achieve a healthier, happier brain. Your brain is already at least 70 percent fat, so supplementing it with more fat is only natural. Omega-3 fatty acids are a great fat to incorporate into your diet to improve your memory and learning abilities, two things that tend to fall by the wayside when you have brain fog.
Medium-chain triglyceride or MCT oil is also an invaluable part of fighting off brain fog. The oil, when ingested, becomes ketones that your body uses as an energy source when you don’t ingest enough carbs. This will promote ketosis, helping you burn fat and even lose weight.
If you’re not already getting enough MCTs through your diet, try our Authentic Keto MCT oil softgels. These softgels are easy to eat and they load you up with the healthy fats your brain needs. Our MCT oil is dairy-free, gluten-free, and non-GMO too!
Prioritize Your Sleep
We can’t say this enough, but getting the appropriate amount of sleep every night is important if you’re in a constant state of brain fogginess not caused by a disease or medical condition. You might even want to increase your sleep until you feel mentally clearer. Try sleeping for eight or nine hours per night. In case you have trouble with falling asleep try our natural deep sleep supplement.
Train Your Brain
If you injured your calf muscle and couldn’t use it for a few months, when you got back to the gym, you’d train your calves slowly to get back to full strength, right? Although your brain isn’t a muscle, it responds to training the same way any muscle would.
Your brain hasn’t been performing at full strength for weeks or months now. Ease it back into firing on more cylinders by doing brain puzzles and other challenges. Bit by bit, your completion time and accuracy will go up until you feel more like your old self again.
Manage Your Stress
Knowing how to get your stress under control is a key life skill. Sleeping well can reduce your stress, as can choosing a healthy keto diet. Find activities that relax you and commit to doing them when you can.
Create a work/life balance so you’re not working yourself into a mentally poor state. Get exercise too, as that can definitely help with stress and ward off brain fog as well.
Brain fog, although not a true medical condition, can be caused by a slew of diseases and even your medication. Not sleeping enough, failing to manage stress, and eating a poor diet can worsen brain fog as well.
The keto diet, which is high in brain-boosting fats and MCT oil, could be the first step to a healthier brain!
Brain fog is most definitely real. If you suspect you have brain fog, it’s always worth seeing your doctor for a blood test. You may also want to ask your doctor about adjusting your medications if you’re on any.
Whether brain fog is permanent depends on what causes it. If your brain fog is attributed to a disease like lupus, although lupus is incurable, its symptoms tend to come and go. Thus, you may feel mentally foggier some days than others.
With a condition like chronic fatigue syndrome, brain fog can be long-lasting, but it doesn’t have to be permanent.
Brain fog will last until you make the modifications necessary in your life to overcome it. If your brain fog is due to lack of sleep, improving your sleeping habits could reduce or even eliminate your brain fog. If it’s a dietary issue, such as you’re deficient in B-vitamins, then a healthier diet such as keto can end your brain fog soon after you start.
Brain fog can be a symptom of depression. Some symptoms of depression also look a lot like brain fog, including lack of interest in activities and hobbies, apathy, and disorientation.
By treating your depression, your brain fog may abate. If another cause has contributed to your brain fog, then the symptoms could persist even with your depression under control.