The Definitive Guide to Brain Fog: Causes, Signs, & Symptoms

By Ali Kuoppala | Last reviewed Tue 25 September 2018

Medical Review by Dr. Stefano Pizzo, MD

What exactly is brain fog? "clouding of consciousness" - as it's medically called - is a condition where a person feels a mental decline or inability to think properly, as explained by a "foggy" feeling inside the head.

Some people feel that they have brain fog all the time, and others report it to only occur occasionally, but fact is that only a very small fraction of people have never felt foggy in the head at some point of their lives.

It may seem normal, but it's not. Brain fog is a sign that something is not running optimally in your brain chemistry, and having that feeling all the time can be a serious sign of real mental decline.

But what causes brain fog? And how do you fix it?

Signs and Symptoms of Brain Fog

signs and symptoms of brain fogBefore we get into the list of brain fog causes, let's take a look at some of the common symptoms.

Predominantly, the most common symptom is simply "feeling foggy", but there are other signs and symptoms too...

...Like these;

  • Forgetfulness
  • Lack of focus and confusion
  • Headaches and fatigue
  • Lack of motivation
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Memory loss and "blank moments"
  • Insomnia and trouble sleeping

What Actually Causes Brain Fog

what causes brain fogThere are many known causes of brain fog, some being easily fixable.

The research about the subject isn't that conclusive, and "brain fog" is often just mentioned on the side in studies that look at different topics (most often studies examining cognitive decline and dementia).

...Still, there's some good evidence as of what actually causes brain fog;

Of course, there are likely many other things that cause brain fog, but at least the points above are clearly proven in scientific studies, and aren't just the common anecdotal rambles you often see on the internet.

How to Cure and Fix Brain Fog Naturally

how to cure brain fog naturallyJust like there are many causes to brain fog, there is also plenty of fixes and natural solutions.

Some of them require more effort than others, but generally speaking, it ain't hard to "lift the fog".

Here's how you do it:

#1. Fix your diet - a brain fog reducing brain boosting diet looks something like this: plenty of carbs from anything other than grains, protein from meat, dairy, and gelatin, fats in moderation from primarily saturated and monounsaturated sources, plenty of fluids, and micronutrient-dense whole foods instead of processed and refined "empty calories".

#2. Sleep more and exercise - first and foremost, a healthy brain needs quality sleep, and lots of it. When it comes to exercise there are two things that top all others for brain health; lifting heavy objects and walking in nature.

#3. Nootropics - the class of drugs and supplements that define cognitive enhancing and neuroprotective compounds is called "nootropics". A whole host of supplements in this category can be used (with scientific proof) to improve cognitive functions and reduce the occurrence of brain fog, few of the key ones for this purpose include: racetams, huperzine A, choline, phosphatidylserine, and eugeroics like modafinil (you can read our nootropics guide here).

The Definitive Guide to Brain Fog: Causes, Signs, & Symptoms was last modified: October 15th, 2018 by Ali Kuoppala