How to End Brain Fog and Chronic Fatigue?



Such a turnaround of events has spiraled many people towards presenting clear signs of mental impairment, brain fog, chronic fatigue and the over used word burn out syndrome!


Why are so many people presenting these kinds of symptoms?


Well, without sounding repetitive this is just a consequence of the excessive measures that are incongruent, that keep isolating people and moreover that display a divisiveness culture that can't express the truth because it is perceived as being against the general narrative!


Our brains and bodies were designed to be more active, were designed to have social interactions and moreover to consume a lot healthier range of foods that don't pervasively raise and disrupt many of our hormonal patterns!


So, let's start with some of the clearest components of the new lifestyle that are affecting this kind of symptom all over the world!


1. Eating behaviors.


The way you are nurturing your body has a huge relationship in terms of the way your neural pathways can sustain a more balanced rhythm when working or when you need your brain to pay attention for longer periods (which nowadays this has been reduced to even a couple of minutes of sustained attention).


Promoting a massive consumption of processed food, sugary treats and alcoholic beverages to cope with lockdowns, recovery of a viral disease or simply the effect of injecting something in your body seems to be the trend among the majority of people that without noticing they're completely being deviated or lured to look for pleasure to alleviate an external symptom caused by the massive bombardment of toxic news.


When you increase the amount of sugar, as well as the toxic fats (trans fats) plus the huge amount of artificial additives and conservatives of fast food or processed options, all those empty nurturing options will overstimulate pathways of your metabolism such as glycolysis, the famous Krebs cycle and oxidative phosphorylation which in turn will deprived several secondary intermediate molecules that will downregulate the proper function and upregulate activation of two subsets of your most important T cells CD4+ and CD8+, which ironically are the main T cells required to fight any viral infection (1).


Affected T cells show deficits in basal glycolysis that may interplay with abnormalities in mitochondrial metabolism, with decreased proton leak at rest and reduced ATP production in the CD8+ subset upon activation (1).


Additionally, all these changes in the metabolism delivery of key molecules of these three pathways mentioned above will disrupt the energy that is available for mental processes which is mainly obtained by glycolysis and alternatively by ketone body production.


In addition to these disruptive metabolic mechanisms, you have been also primed during this long-term pandemic state to work at home, take care of your children or house chores, and keep an eye on the new measures and progress of the world to come back to a more congruent living experience.


Therefore, anxiety and depression are surrounding the environment as a consequence of all the toxic information and excessive notification schedules.


Those external circumstances create the cycle of feeling hunger at unexpected moments and your will power to overindulge that fake hunger gives in turning your schedules of consuming food into a complete mess! That fact per se overstimulates your metabolic input and derails you to keep the loop of consuming more empty food!


2. Excessive isolation.


As positive and optimist as we could be, the vast majority of the population is still living under the threat of fear, isolating more than they use to do it and consuming a lot of digital content that many times is just creating ruminative cycles in their brain!


The lack of social interaction has, as a side effect, the disruption of three key hormones that help regulate your mood and emotions: oxytocin, serotonin and endorphins.


This triad of hormones represent the most important regulators of our feelings pleasure, coping with pain and simply feeling appreciated/accepted. If we have been constantly deprived or excessively controlled to show simple signs of affection such as a handshake, a hug or even a smile (due to the excessive use of face masks) how else can we boost the amount of oxytocin that is needed from our bodies and that is not a simple hormone that satisfied that single need but it also regulates many of the regulation patterns of emotions that allow us more clarity and breaking the toxic pattern of negative thinking!


I have never seen two individuals getting a hug and feeling negative at the same time! I have never seen people smiling to each other and making eye contact while doing it and feeling toxic emotions! At least for some moments while those stimuli are received all humans have a dose of those three hormones that are essential to our survival!


Moreover, the overstimulation of our brain with digital (empty) notifications is the analogy of consuming processed food! The effect of giving a like or receiving a like in any social platform is and will never be as meaningful as hugging someone in physical presence!


As much as we want to adopt and adapt to digital experiences, having a digital call with someone in video will never be the same as being in the physical presence of the person, and the stimulation that internally we are producing and receiving is not enough to comply with the normal levels of social interaction that many people need to feel comforted, cared and accepted!


If that is not enough, the amount of blue light that our body is absorbing through the excessive use of screens is completely linked to a downregulation of the function of hormones as important as insulin, dopamine and leptin! Two of them necessary to control many of your hunger signals and the other one needed to regulate your emotions and energy of feeling motivated and purposeful to keep feeling fulfilled with your life!



3. Increased sedentarism.


Obviously, this had to be the third parameter in this new lifestyle that is pervading our whole body and brain health as you read! The amount of sedentarism that people is having in this new season of life is extremely damaging, to all the balance that is supposed to happen when you have some exercise or physical activities. Our bodies and brain have also been designed to have a lot more physical activity than the one we allow ourselves to perform, hence if your body doesn’t have certain kind of outlet to detoxify the body of the building up of all the hormones and byproducts from the usual metabolic activity, the side effect is that start disrupting the recycling patterns as well as the thresholds that are marked within your signaling mechanisms.


All this inactivity and excessive sitting positions, abuse of digital devices and breaking the eating patterns in terms of nutritional value and schedules gather the immersive amount of chemical substances within you and start creating a disorder, chaotic “noise” that eventually will lead to the development of a dis-ease, which is just the consequence of you not paying attention to this simple behaviors that in spite of having incongruent rules to “stay at home” you could have done some creative solution to perform physical activity inside your house or in the nearby perimeter where you could perform it!


In terms of the brain, the damage that you also are doing to it by not doing any physical activity plus the other two toxic behaviors mentioned above, you’re also building up cortisol, adrenaline and downregulating many of your ally neurotransmitters that help you balance the equation such as: oxytocin, endorphins, dopamine, serotonin and one of the key players in terms of helping your neurons to maintain their normal or even boosted capacity to give you more attention, concentration and mood regulation to handle all the external noise!


To round up this reflection around brain fog and chronic fatigue, and now that you have plenty of information to understand what is going inside your body and brain, what else can you do to break these patterns, without feeling pressured, overwhelmed or exhausted while doing it:


I. Start being more mindful of the food that you’re consuming, you really have the ability to distinguish the food that is toxic, processed and excessive in sugars, you just have to turn around the label to read and that’s it! Eat more natural, home prepared food, even if you have to invest more time in it, you’re worth it! Your body and brain will definitely thank you for that! Also, as much as possible align your schedules of meals to a constant schedule, where you also extend the fasting period overnight to at least 12 hours without consuming food. That simple shift will allow your body to rest, replenish and detoxify any excess of byproducts and will also align back again your hormonal patterns!


II. Implement a light social life that starts taking you in the direction of having more social interaction, in spite of feeling some resistance to do it, you need it, your emotions and mind will really appreciate that human contact, of course, try to be more selective in terms of the people that you will start seeing, so that you have nurturing relationships and not draining ones! This is your biggest opportunity to clean your social circle and also letting the law of reciprocity take care of the people that have almost disappeared from your life or they just look for you when they need something!


III. Get out of your house, now that everywhere in the world measures to be indoors are being more relaxed! Have some contact with nature landscapes, let mother earth help you realign your hormones and inner signals! Start committing to a light exercise routine, where at least three times per week you perform some moderate physical activity within the range of 30-45 minutes, as time goes by push yourself after two months to increase to four times per week and just keep the rhythm!

Almost within the first two weeks you will start feeling completely different in terms of feeling lighter, just remember that is not just aesthetics, this is a necessity for your metabolic pathways and for your brain neural survival! Moreover, this simple but powerful physical routine will start to clear out the toxic neurotransmitters and hormones, giving you more mental stamina, attention and focus power!


In summary, it’s not rocket science what you need to understand and it is not a demanding protocol of recovery that you need to apply, this is just a season of back to the basics! Hence, stop the negative critic every time you feel is bothering you, with some deep breaths, journaling, meditating or walking and buck it up to healing your mind and body! It is in your own power to change all this inner mess and you’re more than capable of doing it!


References.


1. Hornig, M. (2020). Can the light of immunometabolism cut through “brain fog”?. The Journal of Clinical Investigation, 130(3), 1102-1105.

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