Forgetful? Difficulty concentrating? Feel like you are trying to think through cotton wool in your head? This phenomenon is often referred to as “brain fog”, and it’s more common than you think.
Brain fog is often described as feeling like “being in a cloud” that reduces ones ability to think clearly. This feeling of detachment can also can cause a person to become forgetful, lethargic and depressed.
What causes Brain Fog?
In Chinese medicine, this symptom is most commonly the result of what we refer to as dampness. Dampness has a tendency to clog up the channels, and in this case, inhibits clear qi from circulating up to the head. Typically, dampness of this type is either a result of, or exacerbated by a dysfunctional digestive system brought on by inappropriate food choices common to the western diet; an imbalance of yin/yang in the body; and mental/emotional stress.
In Western medical terms, the symptom of “brain fog” is most often the result of stress, depression, hormone fluctuations (as seen in menopause and andropause), and food sensitivities/intolerances.
What Can You Do?
Regular exercise helps to reduce stress, improves blood circulation and oxygenation to the brain, and elevates mood. As little as 30 minutes a day can help you feel dramatically different.
- Address your diet and get acupuncture.
Make an appointment with a qualified TCM practitioner or holistic nutritionist to help you identify what foods may be contributing to your symptoms. Additionally, acupuncture treatment with a qualified TCM therapist will not only help to improve and support your overall health but also assist your body to better integrate these changes.
- Supplement with Reishi mushroom (called Ling Zhi in Chinese herbal medicine).
Hailed as the ‘herb of immortality’, Reishi is a very powerful medicinal that has been used for thousands of years in Asia to strengthen the whole body to preserve life. Modern research has shown Reishi to have numerous positive adaptogenic effects on the body including improvements in digestive functioning, sleep, energy, mood and mental clarity.