We’ve all been there…that moment you go to introduce a friend and you simply can’t remember their name. Or when you swear you left your sunglasses in their usual place only to find them on your head. Or you’re at your computer re-reading the same document for the millionth time and it’s still not sinking in. That is the dreaded brain fog!
While women have been able to legitimately chalk brain fog up as ‘baby brain’, ‘that time of month’ or the effects of menopause, there seems less recognition that MEN experience brain fog too! So, this one's for you (or your) fellas…
What Is Brain Fog Exactly?
Brain fog is the term commonly used to refer to mild cognitive impairment. It’s not a medical condition per se but rather a set of symptoms that affects your ability to think. It’s often described as slow thinking, difficulty focusing, confusion, lack of concentration, forgetfulness, haziness in thought processes or struggling to articulate your thoughts.
What Causes Brain Fog?
Many conditions can cause brain fog, often making it hard to pinpoint the exact cause, but there are certainly some common reasons and associated symptoms.
Vitamin B12 Deficiency
Vitamin B12 is essential for the health of your body and brain! A lack of vitamin B12 can cause issues ranging from tingling in the hands and feet to brain fog, with studies showing low vitamin B12 is associated with poorer memory in men. In a large cross-sectional study of healthy adults, over a quarter of men (25.5%) had vitamin b12 deficiency.
If you have a high alcohol intake, small intestine disease, eg. Crohn’s or Celiac, a vegan diet or take certain medications for heartburn or diabetes your brain fog could be explained by vitamin B12 deficiency.
Testosterone is responsible for more than just big muscles and sex drive. Low testosterone has been linked to brain fog and a general decline in memory and focus. Having low testosterone is more common than you may think, with research estimating between 10 and 40% of men experiencing testosterone deficiency.
Anxiety is a healthy response to stress and can keep us alert in dangerous situations. It’s also completely normal to feel anxious about an upcoming work presentation or a hot date. But when it is out of proportion to normal situations or you experience prolonged anxious thoughts, you find brain fog setting in, making it harder to focus. This can in turn amplify your anxiety.
Stress and Poor Sleep
We all know that hazy feeling of a poor night sleep or stressful events have on the days that follow. It’s only natural that when your brain is fatigued it becomes harder to think, reason and focus. Researchers believe that sleep deprivation disrupts communication between your brain cells which impacts your memory and leaves you with mini-mental lapses.
Brain fog may be an early warning sign for many underlying medical conditions. While there are other factors to consider, conditions associated with inflammation or fatigue of your nervous system, such as Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, inflammatory bowel disease and chronic fatigue syndrome are commonly linked to causing brain fog.
How to Clear Your Brain Fog Naturally
Given that brain fog can be caused by any number of underlying conditions, the best defence against it is to work on getting enough sleep, eating a nutritious diet, reducing stress and consider giving your system a boost with natural supplements, like Happy Mammoth’s Ketone Energy Pro-4. It’s made of 7 key ingredients that can help fight brain fog as well as boost energy, support weight loss and even out your moods.
#1. MTC Oil
MCT oil is considered a ‘healthy fat’ being a medium chain triglyceride, meaning they are more easily digested than long-chain fatty acids. Among the research that suggests that MTC could be beneficial for weight loss, exercise performance and heart health it also has positive effects on brain function.
The ability for the brain to quickly use the energy from MTC oil is thought to improve neural function and help with short term memory, particularly in people with a specific type of Alzheimer’s.
#2. Astragalus Root
Astragalus root has been used for centuries in traditional Chinese medicine to boost immunity, fight inflammation and control blood glucose levels. Low or uncontrolled blood sugar levels are often associated with brain fog and memory loss. A study looking at diabetic rats showed promising evidence that Astragalus polysaccharides, the active component of astragalus root, was responsible for memory improvement.
#3. Yerba Mate
Yerba mate is a powerhouse of goodness for your body and your brain! It has the same natural caffeine content as coffee but contains 90% more antioxidants than green tea.
While the caffeine content of yerba isn’t going to help you make tough decisions, it can certainly help you clear the brain fog. Studies have found that low to moderate caffeine intake can improve alertness, vigilance, attention, reaction time and attention.
#4. Lion's Mane Mushroom
These very funky looking mushrooms have the ability to stimulate the growth of brain cells. Who doesn’t want more brain power?! While many animal studies have yielded positive results regarding memory loss, one study in older adults (>50years) with mild cognitive impairment found that consuming powdered lion’s mane mushroom daily for four months significantly improved mental function.
#5. Chaga Mushroom
Fatigue is a serious problem in our fast-paced lives and affects your physical and mental health, work efficiency, and overall quality of life. Chaga mushroom has been found to improve physical endurance and delay the onset of fatigue in animal studies. Plus, it’s antioxidant properties were found to enhance learning and memory in a study of mice. A win for the body and mind!
#6. Cordyceps Mushroom
A bad night’s sleep often makes the next day hard to get through. Multiple bad nights see the brain fog setting in and your productivity diminishing! The good news is animal studies suggest that cordyceps mushroom is beneficial for sleep. As a bonus, it’s also thought to boost exercise performance, with a small study showing a 7% improvement in oxygen uptake for those taking cordyceps mushroom.
#7. Vitamin B12
Lack of vitamin B12 is known to cause brain fog and memory loss, so it seems sensible that supplementing your diet with vitamin B12 could help improve your clarity and focus. One study showed that vitamin B12 supplementation improved symptoms of cognitive impairment in 84% of patients.
The Bottom Line
While men often put on a ‘brave face’ when it comes to their mental health, it’s best not to ignore your brain fog as it can start to impact all areas of your life from decision making at work to remembering your family commitments. There could be any number of underlying causes of your brain fog, but relief is possible. Happy Mammoth has combined the 7 natural ingredients in one tub to specifically help men banish the brain fog!