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Combat Brain Fog - Strengthen Your Mind Naturally

Sure, it’s normal to get a little cloudy in the head sometimes, right? So what exactly is brain fog? Even the definition is a bit fuzzy, but you’ll know it when it happens. It might begin with something small like forgetting your glasses or trying to remember a name on the tip of your tongue… At those times when you don’t feel quite as sharp as you’d like to be, it’s as if a cloudy haze is obstructing your vision, or in this case your memory. From seemingly minor instances, to the more obvious lapses, when it happens, it can be frustrating and a little nerve-racking.

The beautiful news is, research into brain health is flourishing, and you can benefit from what’s being discovered. For instance, in his groundbreaking book “You Can Fix Your Brain” Dr. Tom O’Bryan offers ways we can strengthen mental acuity and brain function. Leaky gut is a term that gets tossed around a lot, meaning harmful molecules that pass through the gut into the bloodstream that result in inflammation and lead to disease. What’s that got to do with the brain? Dr. O’Bryan talks about the importance of knowing about something called “leaky brain,” which is just as common and very similar.

The main difference being, instead of the gut, these harmful molecules penetrate the blood/brain barrier (protective membrane-coating around the brain). Like leaky gut, it also causes inflammation and can result in the body becoming vulnerable to impairments, weaknesses and diseases related to brain health. While this may sound daunting, it’s not. Think of it as a wellness window, offering new insight. With this awareness, you can cultivate brain-friendly habits to stay sharper longer.   

Remove Harmful Bacteria

One thing Dr. O’Bryan advocates is the ancient Ayurvedic practice of oil pulling. Simply put, swishing oil around in your mouth for about 10-15 minutes a day. It seems a little weird at first and takes some getting used to. But it’s definitely worth incorporating into your self-care routine. The goal being: oil removes toxic bacteria and germs that accumulate in your mouth. And taking it a step further, you’ll be preventing these toxins from penetrating the brain/blood barrier. While oil pulling can be done with different oils, coconut is an excellent choice for multiple reasons: it’s antibacterial, antifungal, naturally healing… plus, if unrefined, tastes delicious. And remember, don’t swallow the oil, you always need to spit it out so it leaves your mouth as fresh as possible. 

Purify the Body

Fasting is a common health practice that can be an effective method of removing impurities from the body. Unfortunately, toxins are part of everyday living. The downside of fasting is, it only works temporarily. Instead of fasting, detoxify on a regular basis. Dr. O’Bryan suggests eating at least one serving of cruciferous vegetables, a day to detoxify your liver. That includes broccoli, cauliflower, kale, turnips, collard greens and many other tasty options.

Avoid Depleting Foods

Even when you don’t realize it, your body works overtime to take care of you. As your immune system continually protects you against harmful substances, your digestive system can get overtaxed and become hypersensitive to foods that are even mildly irritating. This is why Dr. O’Bryan stresses the importance of limiting foods than can deplete the body; that includes wheat and dairy. But he also warns that going off these foods may create withdrawal symptoms. So… to combat adverse reactions, Dr. O’Bryan suggests staying hydrated, adding spices to your diet and managing stress by keeping calm. 


Posture & The Brain 

When your spine is straight you not only look healthier, you are. That’s because when the nerves in your body are in alignment they send crucial messages to your brain, in a kind of smooth pathway. However, when your spine isn’t straight, or your neck has inflammation that passage becomes obstructed… So Dr. O’Brien suggests paying attention to how you hold your body when driving, and the way you position your head and neck in sleep. He suggests sleeping on your back. And instead of using a pillow behind your head and tilting it, he recommends tucking it behind your knees. And for neck support, he advocates rolling up a small hand towel, secured by rubber bands.  

DHA & the Brain 

DHA (Docosahexaenoic acid) is an omega 3 fatty acid essential to brain function for adults, including the ability to learn. Foods high in DHA include: mackerel, salmon, sardines, anchovies. For those on a vegetarian diet: walnuts, chia seeds and soybeans. If you don’t get enough DHA in your diet, carefully weigh the options before choosing a supplement. In addition to checking side effects, if you are pregnant or nursing, ask your doctor before taking DHA.


It’s likely on your spice rack already. But don’t stop at sprinkling rosemary on your home fries. Take the extract, smell the spice, or essential oil… For quite some time, the aromatic spice has been associated with brain health. And there’s increased interest in the study of rosemary for its neuroprotective benefits and it’s use to improve memory function.

Yoga & The Brain 

Mindfulness practices such as Yoga and meditation also have been shown to positively impact brain function. A Harvard study discovered mindfulness may alter the brains of depressed patients. Focus, learning, memory... the practice of Yoga, has countless wellness benefits… as research grows, more light is shed on its mind/body connection. 

*with all natural remedies, always check for side effects to make sure they’re safe for you. 



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