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Severe brain fog/groggyness, memory/concentration problems
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Severe brain fog/groggyness, memory/concentration problems

Hi guys,

I joined here because I'm at my wits end with this condition, it started about two years ago and I cant shake it off, I'm constantly in a heavy fog.

Basically I'm groggy all the time with various severity depending on what I eat or drink, it's like if I had a couple of alcohool drinks, not the fun feeling type..
I cant think straight, memory recall and concentration are terrible, I'm at the point where I cant plan driving from A to B, I have to google map everything in my own area, it's nuts.
Forget about reading a book, anything I read I cant remember the previous line.

About me,
I'm 41, in good shape(about 14-15% body fat), workout 5 times per week, I try to eat well, tons of veggies, lean meats, avoiding gluten and milk products at the moment(started 3 months ago).

What I've done about it,
I've seen countless doctors and they cant pinpoint the problem.
Tests done:
Complete bloodwork, the usual TSH, Glucose, Iron, B12, Cal/mag, minerals, palette counts..etc all normal.
Head CT scan - normal.
Head EEG - normal.
Seen a ear specialist, tons of tests done for labs, meniere..etc all normal.
Last week I went to see a naturopath and she had me do a hormonal test panel, waiting for results.

The following definitely worsen my condition, I go from feeling medium fog to completely spaced out in a matter of minutes (3-5)

Diet drinks of any kind.
Coke, Pepsi, any regular soft drinks.
Crystal light.
Alcohol of course.
Anything with Caffeine.
Carbonated water (Club Soda).
Bread, Butter, Margarine.

I can understand when I react to sugars or caffeine but carbonated water? Crystal light?

Current meds,
Was put on Zoloft eight months ago, it does help me cope with this condition.

So I'm putting this out there, might be a simple diagnostic but the doctors I've seen cant find one, suggestions welcomed.

Thanks, Steve.

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9 Comments Post a Comment
1433541 tn?1297793018
I have a friend that cannot eat or drink anything with artificial sweeteners in it or it gives him memory loss and a feeling of sleepyness. I would cut out all artificial sweeteners except Stevia as a test. Stevia is a natural product. but most of the things (besides the bread and butter products and fruit) have artificial sweetener.

Try that.  Good luck
Avatar f tn
Deficiencies in B vitamins other than b-12 can cause many of the symptoms you have mentioned.  Have you had other b vitamin levels tested?  You could add a good B complex vitamin to your routine and see if it helps.  But be patient, it may take some weeks before you start to notice any improvement.
Avatar m tn
I only had B12 tested out of the Bs, I'll try a B complex for a couple of months and see how it goes, I'll also switch to drinking water only.. That's a tough one but I'm at the point of being totally non functional so it's gonna happen.

Thanks both for your suggestions.

Avatar f tn
Go to an allergist and have yourself tested for allergies, both environmental and food.  I have gotten a lot of the same symptoms you're describing, and it turns out I am allergic to pretty much everything (dust, trees, molds, pollens, grass, cats, dogs, etc. etc.).  Because I am constantly exposed to these allergens, my body is constantly fighting the allergens off.  My body is reacting as if it has been poisoned, which causes the symptoms you are describing.

A real big hint that it's an allergy is that there are specific triggers (such as foods).  This likely indicates that you're allergic to something that is very common in your diet.

A way to test food allergies out without going to a doctor is trying a detox.  Stop eating everything except for basic fruits and vegetables, and perhaps fish or chicken.  Do this for a minimum of two weeks (so as to clean out the system entirely of any toxins), drink only water and then see how you feel.  If you improve, you can assume it's a dietary thing.  Slowly introduce breads, nuts, etc. into your diet (one at a time), and make note of what you have eaten and how you are feeling.  If you start feeling crappy, cut that food out of your diet entirely.

I personally tried that out a few years ago.  It was that detox that made me realize how intolerant to milk I am (and I lost 10 pounds!).  I started feeling like I had been hit by a bus as soon as I brought dairy products back into my diet.  Since I have cut them out, I have improved dramatically.

Good luck!
Avatar m tn
Steve I have suffered from brain fog for the past two years also. It is very debilitating. I have also had many test including an MRI scan of my brain. I went to a sleep specialist as well because mine is worse if I have 8 hours sleep. If i limit my sleep to 7 hours or less, i feel tired but at least the brain fog isnt as bad and I can function. The sleep specialist couldnt help me. I have a highly stessfull job and I am exploring the possibility that it is stress related and seeing a councillor for this. I am starting to think that this is related to prolonged stress.
Avatar n tn
Steve, I had nowhere near the extreme you did but brain fog drove me insane. I read the book "The Ultramind Solution" by Dr Mark Hyman and was floored at some of the basic things we do and don't do...that we NEED to do for our bodies to work properly. One huge thing is that very few people in the U.S. get enough omega fish oil due to not eating enough fish. Omega fish oil feeds and nourishes our brain. I have not had any brain fog since I got serious about it. The book should be available at the library. I know you said you can't read/remember. Perhaps try the omega's and then head straight to get the book. Hope this helps somewhat. God bless.
1572239 tn?1295796635
ow are your living conditions? To me sounds like sick house syndrome.  Elimiating anything that is artificial Such as your drinks is big.  Artificial sweeteners such as aspertane never digest in your body and stay in your system forever.  Being a foriegn body some cells try and copy dna and turn into cancer cells.  I know the soda commercials or the government never mention this. I learned of it in Vet school.  You are in good shape. My gut and experience tell me it is enviromental.  Vit B12 helps with memory and no-one in this world get enough omega 3 and antioxidents from small berries eg. Acai berry.  Try detoxing your body, get your houses ventilation system checked.  I wish you all the luck.
PS  Sometimes we workout WAT to much which can cause fatige, and fogginess in the head.  Just saying.
Avatar m tn
Steve, have you made any progress on diagnosing any of your symtoms (symptoms)?  I am in a similar situation and I am about to start going through some of the tests you mentioned that you have had done.  I'm really hoping to pinpoint something, but I have a feeling that might not happen.  It's getting really hard for me to function at work and socially.
Avatar f tn
Your condition reminded me of a couple things--
You listed a number of sugary drinks that you take on a regular basis.  If you have too much sugar and not enough protein your blood cannot disperse the sugar properly and it causes brain fog.  I've had hypoglycemia for a long time, and so has my mother.  My father is diabetic, and experiences extreme brain fog if he has too much sugar, because the sugar in the blood makes it thick.
Another thing I thought of was fibromyalgia.  There's a male version of the disease.  My mother has had it for more than 12 years, and it has handicapped her severely.  When she first began it, she was physically healthy and active; but one recurring problem she had was intense brain fog and exhaustion.  Fibromyalgia works to deteriorate the nervous system, telling the brain there is physical pain all over the body when there isn't.  As a result there is chronic sleep loss, exhaustion, the muscular tissues become knotted and hard (myofascia) and immobility at various degrees incurs.  This condition is very hard to diagnose, and is often mistaken for other diseases.  My mother went for years to doctors who told her it was all in her head, and was only in the past 5 years been actually diagnosed with fibromyalgia.  Perhaps you might look into those things.
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