Debilitating Brain Fog. Any Help? - Page 2 - VeggieBoards
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#31 Old 03-06-2016, 12:58 PM
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JWVC702:

I am glad you are following some of the very helpful recommendations the other posters have made.

Here is something else you may want to try--mindfulness meditation. I began a mindfulness meditation practice in 2015, and I found it has improved my life in many different ways. Here are some of the benefits I have noticed:
  1. reduced stress
  2. increased focus
  3. increased enjoyment of the simple things in life
  4. increased compassion for others

I had wanted to try mindfulness meditation for a number of years, but somehow thought the actual practice was much more complicated than it actually is. Then, I saw the following video on YouTube which explained how simple it really is: http://tinyurl.com/hzoc7t2 . This video is by Dan Harris, an ABC News reporter and anchorman.
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#32 Old 03-06-2016, 01:34 PM
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Brain fog is always my first sign of depression

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Originally Posted by JWVC702 View Post
I've been having constant brain fog ever since I switched my diet in July 2015. Even after supplementing (multivitamin, calcium with vitamin D3, flaxseed oil, DHA & EPA from algae, B12) and eating as much as I can abundantly in my college cafeteria I still have it. I recently grabbed my blood test which yielded normal stats and picked up some coconut oil which I use 3 spoonfuls of every day. I even contemplated eating meat and dairy again to see if it's a potential fix but I really don't want to go that route because that would break me emotionally. I'm really desperate for answers and am borderline depressed when every day I'm just a human with a dead brain carrying on about my day unproductively. I am a normally functioning human being with no bodily defects except the fog, I exercise regularly, sleep 6-8 hours, don't mess with unhealthier foods, meditate occasionally, and try to stay persistent with my efforts. So any advice would be appreciated.
I would echo what so many others here have said - brain fog is a major red flag for depression.

It sounds weird, but depression is not really about being sad (although that can be part of it). I always know that I need to get help when I start to experience poor concentration and brain fog. BTW, I have good iron/b12 and experienced this for decades before I went vegetarian or vegan.

Poor concentration is not just a red flag, it's actually more helpful in diagnosing depression than sadness. Lots of people experience sadness, but it doesn't mean their depressed. Brain fog and poor concentration are a very helpful sign for physicians and psychologists. For example, when I'm seriously depressed, I start to notice that I even start talking and moving more slowly! Now I know that as soon as I have trouble concentrating (I can't even read a newspaper article at times, and normally I read 3-5 books per week). It's absolutely worth seeing someone about. It's a real disease, and there is help for it! The sooner you see someone, the sooner you'll get better

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#33 Old 03-09-2016, 05:25 PM
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Originally Posted by scwendy View Post
I was recently diagnosed with an almost debilitating Vitamin D deficiency. Mine was an 8, yes, you read that right, an 8. I was/am suffering intense brain fog, distractibility, depressive symptoms, extreme fatigue, unexplained weight gain of 15 pounds in two months, and aches and pains. My physician recommended 10,000 IU and he will recheck my levels in 4 months. I started the supplement (vegan D3) this week and am hoping for relief in the next weeks/months. Everything I have read and my doctor agrees, that if possible the ideal way to get your Vitamin D is through sunlight exposure. For me, a fair skinned person of medium build, 10 to 20 minutes of morning sun a day should suffice (once my stores are back to normal). I work inside all day and hardly ever go outside without sunscreen, especially over the past year. I am definitely going to be very conscious about getting some unfiltered sun exposure (not too much!) daily as the weather allows. Never in a million years would I have suspected a vitamin D deficiency as the cause for all my health problems over the past 2 months.

I'm not sure if that is the issue for you, but if your levels are low (I have a friend who was considered low at 28 and given supplements), take it very seriously.

Best of luck with your health, friend.
Best of luck to you as well, scwendy! My dietitian and counselor are working together to help solve my issue. I just wish I took action along time ago. But I'm staying diligent about when I'll get my blood results (hopefully get that next week) because it feels like forever to get the information I need and cure it in an amount of time. Fingers crossed!

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#34 Old 03-28-2016, 09:24 AM
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I was tested on vitamin D, B12, calcium, iron, zinc, DHA, EPA. All were normal and don't contribute to my brain fog.
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#35 Old 03-28-2016, 09:38 AM
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Originally Posted by David3 View Post
Hi JVWC,

In a previous post, you stated that you were at least 30 pounds underweight: https://www.veggieboards.com/forum/21...al-advice.html .

I suspect that you are not getting enough calories.

For your brain fog, the first thing you should suspect is lack of calories. Your brain only weighs about 3 pounds, yet it consumes 20% of all your calories: http://www.scientificamerican.com/ar...hard-calories/

Do this:

1. Use this calculator to determine your daily calorie needs: https://www.healthstatus.com/perl/calculator.cgi

2. Remember this calorie rule-of-thumb:

One cup of boiled legumes is about 230 calories
One cup of boiled grains is about 190 calories
One cup of fresh fruit is 40-100 calories
One cup of non-starchy vegetables is 5-40 calories
One cup of nuts or seeds is 700-1000 calories

Knowing this, you can make sure that you're getting enough calories, each and every day.


Remember, healthy veg diets are based on legumes and grains - these are the protein and calorie foundations of our diet.

If you have trouble getting enough calories, have more nuts, seeds, and/or nut butters.

If you continue to have problems, please immediately see a Registered Dietitian, and a physician. You should be able to see one for free, through your university's student health center.


Here is a well-written Vegetarian (actually vegan) Guide. If you look on page 7, it nicely summarizes vegan nutrition: https://www.healthstatus.com/perl/calculator.cgi
I'm quoting this for @JVWC. Since you don't have any issues with specific nutrients, try eating more food, more fats, more calories and see if that helps....
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#36 Old 03-30-2016, 10:10 PM
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Hey guys I'm sorry! I misread my blood test. How silly of me... it said I was low in vitamin D (22.5 ng/mL with a reference of 30-100) and zinc (0.49 mcg/mL with a reference of 0.66-1.10). So what would any of you recommend me do? I'm trying not to be too excited since this might not be the real answer but it kind of does make sense when I said I was mostly isolated for a whole summer.

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#37 Old 03-31-2016, 12:01 AM
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Regular vigorous bike riding or swimming greatly affects my mood. When I do it I feel so good that it seems I was mildly depressed without knowing it when not exercising.

I suggest finding an activity you enjoy and giving it a shot.
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#38 Old 04-01-2016, 10:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JWVC702 View Post
Hey guys I'm sorry! I misread my blood test. How silly of me... it said I was low in vitamin D (22.5 ng/mL with a reference of 30-100) and zinc (0.49 mcg/mL with a reference of 0.66-1.10). So what would any of you recommend me do? I'm trying not to be too excited since this might not be the real answer but it kind of does make sense when I said I was mostly isolated for a whole summer.
I would supplement vitamin D at 1000-2000 I.U. per day. Did your doctor not suggest this? D3 works better than D2, (and there is vegan D3 out there if you're vegan.) Low vitamin D levels make absorption of zinc difficult, so that may explain that deficiency. D also helps absorption of iron and other important nutrients. So I would get some sun and supplement.
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#39 Old 12-27-2017, 09:15 PM
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UPDATE: Finally Relieved of Brain Fog

Not sure if anyone will receive this post after almost 2 years have passed, but originally I made a post about having brain fog trying to get help from the forum... gladly I can say that almost after 2 years of trying and trying it finally went away! Funny enough is that throughout the time of healing I've been endulging mostly in vegan foods (I'm not vegan yet/for now... but that's a different topic). So if anyone who participated in this forum is able to see this, thanks for your help and guidance. I finally came through and am on a mission to get back in school again

"All mankind is divided into three classes: those that are immovable, those that are movable, and those that move."

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#40 Old 12-28-2017, 05:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JWVC702 View Post
Not sure if anyone will receive this post after almost 2 years have passed, but originally I made a post about having brain fog trying to get help from the forum... gladly I can say that almost after 2 years of trying and trying it finally went away! Funny enough is that throughout the time of healing I've been endulging mostly in vegan foods (I'm not vegan yet/for now... but that's a different topic). So if anyone who participated in this forum is able to see this, thanks for your help and guidance. I finally came through and am on a mission to get back in school again

Hi JWVC702,

It's great to hear that you are feeling so much better!

.

_________

Specific recommendations for a healthy diet include: eating more fruit, vegetables, legumes, nuts and grains; cutting down on salt, sugar and fats. It is also advisable to choose unsaturated fats, instead of saturated fats and towards the elimination of trans-fatty acids."
- United Nations' World Health Organization
http://www.who.int/topics/diet/en/
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#41 Old 12-29-2017, 07:32 AM
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First congrats on feeling better. I only want to add (although I've stated it elsewhere, but this is a better place for it I think), that brain fog can sometimes be caused by protein overdose, so in case nothing else helps, it's worth to check also. Cheers

...
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#42 Old 12-29-2017, 11:19 AM
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A bit late for the OP, but I went through the brain fog once and fixed it in myself.
Several years after going vegan I started to get brain fog. Sort of reduced awareness, fuzzy thinking, mentally tired. I tried various things and it just progressed and I started to feel physically tired. Then all my skin went dry and flaky, that was the second clue my foggy mind needed. Both are among the many possible symptoms of hypothyroidism.
I got a dropper bottle and made a solution of potassium iodide of sufficient concentration that each drop contained 200 µg of potassium iodide [thats 0.2 mg or 0.0002 grams] so each drop supplied 150 µg of iodine, a full days supply. For two months I used two drops a day and the brain fog and dry skin both went away, I then switched to using one drop a day 5 to 7 days a week and it hasnt returned even after several years and my few-dollars of potassium iodide is enough to last two lifetimes, lol.
Sea vegetables also have iodine.
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#43 Old 12-31-2017, 10:54 AM
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I would be cautious with @Auxin advice, some diseases caused by gluten intolerance may give flaky skin, and they may be connected with allergy for iodine, in that case taking iodine may be very dangerous, so don't try that at home without consulting a doctor first.

...
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#44 Old 12-31-2017, 12:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JWVC702 View Post
Not sure if anyone will receive this post after almost 2 years have passed, but originally I made a post about having brain fog trying to get help from the forum... gladly I can say that almost after 2 years of trying and trying it finally went away! Funny enough is that throughout the time of healing I've been endulging mostly in vegan foods (I'm not vegan yet/for now... but that's a different topic). So if anyone who participated in this forum is able to see this, thanks for your help and guidance. I finally came through and am on a mission to get back in school again
Great news! And thanks so much for coming back to the forum with an update it. Many people don't bother but definately worth it!

What do you think was what was most effective in beating it? Or is it hard to say if you were trying lots of things at once?
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#45 Old 12-31-2017, 02:13 PM
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Self-diagnosis is probably not a good idea. Although physicians are not well educated in nutrition, they can certainly do the testing that is necessary to identify vitamin / mineral deficiencies. A Registered Dietitian can also help you - your physician can refer you to one.
.
.

_________

Specific recommendations for a healthy diet include: eating more fruit, vegetables, legumes, nuts and grains; cutting down on salt, sugar and fats. It is also advisable to choose unsaturated fats, instead of saturated fats and towards the elimination of trans-fatty acids."
- United Nations' World Health Organization
http://www.who.int/topics/diet/en/
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#46 Old 02-19-2018, 09:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jamie in Chile View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by JWVC702 View Post
Not sure if anyone will receive this post after almost 2 years have passed, but originally I made a post about having brain fog trying to get help from the forum... gladly I can say that almost after 2 years of trying and trying it finally went away! Funny enough is that throughout the time of healing I've been endulging mostly in vegan foods (I'm not vegan yet/for now... but that's a different topic). So if anyone who participated in this forum is able to see this, thanks for your help and guidance. I finally came through and am on a mission to get back in school again
Great news! And thanks so much for coming back to the forum with an update it. Many people don't bother but definately worth it!

What do you think was what was most effective in beating it? Or is it hard to say if you were trying lots of things at once?
Apologies for the late reply! I think what was most effective was just being consistent with a plan to eat a diverse set of foods (even though that meant having certain meats come back into play... but clearly not that often as I have said that during the time of healing it's been mostly plant sources and gaining more knowledge about what foods to incorporate). Currently most of my diet consists of bananas, oatmeal made of that, soymilk, peanut butter, & flax/hemp/chia seeds... a lentil loaf with some peas on the side, a sweet potato burger, and some fried rice with tofu and veggies. The fog can subtly come back only if I haven't prepared the foods so like I said I've been staying consistent and it has surely got me up and cooking lol something I think is an intrinsic factor of being plant-based. But it was definitely hard to get myself on the right track as I was seeing doctors and psychiatrists who didn't help much on top of trying pills upon pills ultimately wasting my money. Because after looking at so many desperate options to pinpoint the cause, I just said "forget it, let's just focus on a wholesome approach and less about supplements" and it took a slow year to get to where I am today. But yeah... the only supplements I take are vitamin D3 and fish oil (algae oil too expensive for me at the moment).

"All mankind is divided into three classes: those that are immovable, those that are movable, and those that move."

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#47 Old 02-19-2018, 12:26 PM
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Hi JWVC,


It sounds like you really have a good handle on this - a big congratulations on your improved well-being.


I'd say it's very unlikely that you need the small amount of meat that you are eating. It's true that meat is a rich source of protein, iron, calories, niacin, vitamin B6, and zinc: http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/...roducts/6206/2. However, all of these nutrients are available from plant sources as well. If you ultimately become interested in reducing/eliminating the small amount of meat that you do eat, a Registered Dietitian can easily help you to adjust your diet accordingly. Your physician can refer you to a Registered Dietitian - hopefully one who includes vegetarian nutrition as a specialty. If not, you can easily find a local Registered Dietitian through the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics - just click on the red "Find An Expert" button in the top-right portion of the webpage: http://www.eatright.org . In which country do you live?
.
.

_________

Specific recommendations for a healthy diet include: eating more fruit, vegetables, legumes, nuts and grains; cutting down on salt, sugar and fats. It is also advisable to choose unsaturated fats, instead of saturated fats and towards the elimination of trans-fatty acids."
- United Nations' World Health Organization
http://www.who.int/topics/diet/en/
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#48 Old 02-19-2018, 01:14 PM
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Originally Posted by David3 View Post
Hi JWVC,


It sounds like you really have a good handle on this - a big congratulations on your improved well-being.


I'd say it's very unlikely that you need the small amount of meat that you are eating. It's true that meat is a rich source of protein, iron, calories, niacin, vitamin B6, and zinc: http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/...roducts/6206/2. However, all of these nutrients are available from plant sources as well. If you ultimately become interested in reducing/eliminating the small amount of meat that you do eat, a Registered Dietitian can easily help you to adjust your diet accordingly. Your physician can refer you to a Registered Dietitian - hopefully one who includes vegetarian nutrition as a specialty. If not, you can easily find a local Registered Dietitian through the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics - just click on the red "Find An Expert" button in the top-right portion of the webpage: http://www.eatright.org . In which country do you live?
.
.
I have been with a dietician during the time that I went cold turkey in switching diets resulting in the fogginess. We both were only concerned for blood tests to fix the problem and not what's appropriate to eat during that time; though I'm positive if I were to see one they would guide me in a well-balanced path of eating (:

"All mankind is divided into three classes: those that are immovable, those that are movable, and those that move."

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#49 Old 02-19-2018, 03:22 PM
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Thanks a lot for providing an update and you do seem to be eating a healthy diet - I hope it continues to work out for you.
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