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Functional Neurology: What Causes Inflammation and Brain Fog?

Functional Neurology: What Causes Inflammation and Brain Fog? | El Paso, TX Chiropractor

Of all of the wide array of health issues that healthcare professionals talk to their patients about, there is one which is tremendously overlooked and not taken seriously: brain fog. Many people suffer from brain fog and fatigue and unfortunately, many people are left to fend for themselves when it comes to this health issue. Patients describe feeling as if they're living in a haze, their lives passing them by. Instead of being engaged in the present moment, patients describe feeling as though they're seeing life from a distance. Their thinking is no longer sharp, and their brilliant minds are sidelined.

Why do health issues like these fall through the cracks of conventional medicine? This may be because there's currently no definitive treatment available for brain fog. The purpose of the following article is to discuss the causes of inflammation and brain fog. Understanding the reasons for this type of health issue may hopefully help shine a new light on future treatments.

Brain Fog and Inflammation

Inflammation is an essential part of the immune system. We need inflammation to protects us from injury, infection, and illness. However, as with everything else in the human body, it is all about balance. An excessive amount of inflammation can cause the blood-brain barrier (BBB) to become more permeable, leading to brain inflammation. Neuroinflammation is sometimes known as "leaky brain syndrome" and this inflammatory oxidative stress (OS) in the hypothalamus of the brain is ultimately believed to be the root cause of brain fog, among other neurological diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease.

Hidden Causes of Inflammation and Brain Fog

"Brain fog", however, is very much considered to be a general term for the actual health issue. The name tells you exactly what it is (diminished brain function), however, it doesn't exactly tell you what's causing the brain inflammation in the first place. Let's dig deeper into the reasons for brain fog. We will describe the main causes of brain fog, according to researchers.

Thyroid Problems

Every cell in the human body depends on thyroid function to be healthy and to be able to operate at full capacity. Thyroid hormone imbalances have been demonstrated to cause inflammatory reactions. The thyroid functions by receiving the proper messages in the brain during the hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid (HPT) axis. Therefore, if the hypothalamus is inflamed, it can cause dysfunction in the brain-thyroid axis. The final result? A vicious cycle of inflammation.

Adrenal Fatigue

As you've got the brain-thyroid axis, you also have the brain-adrenal (HPA) axis. Dysfunctions of the hormonal circadian rhythm are known as an adrenal disorder. During fatigue, your stress hormone cortisol can be found all over the region and this imbalance can stress out your system. The same as thyroid problems, brain fog can be both the cause and the consequence of adrenal fatigue because of the brain-hormone connection, among other essential functions in the body.

Viral Infections

Low-grade chronic viral infections, such as Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), are connected to a wide array of inflammatory ailments like chronic fatigue syndrome. The brain needs vitamin D to flourish and EBV has been demonstrated to actually block the body from utilizing it. Viral infections, if left untreated, can also trigger excess inflammation, leading to many health issues.

Leaky Gut Syndrome

The gut and the brain are unmistakenly connected, they are even formed from the exact same fetal tissue when you're growing in your mother's uterus. According to a variety of research studies, leaky gut syndrome is associated with an increase in gut toxins, known as LPS, which have been demonstrated to affect inflammation and brain fog.

Candida Overgrowth

Researchers state that excess yeast in the microbiome, by way of instance, candida overgrowth, can also ultimately increase the inflammatory cells IL-1, IL-6, and TNF, which may contribute to too much inflammation in the human brain and body.

Histamine Intolerance

Several people, especially people with all of the gut problems mentioned above, are more prone to experiencing something known as histamine intolerance. This happens when the body does not break down the cell histamine and it causes a discharge of superoxide, a well-known free radical which brings about a lot of inflammation and other health issues.

Inflammatory Foods

Inflammatory foods high in sugar, gluten (wheat, rye, barley, spelt, and oats), or casein (dairy products) are a problem for many men and women. Free radical harm can triple by higher blood glucose levels from these inflammatory foods.


Toxins like mold and heavy metals are just two overlooked factors that can contribute to brain fog in patients.

Poor Sleep

If you're not sleeping properly at night, you don't need me to tell you that it affects your brain health. The antioxidant glutathione, which increases stress from the hypothalamus, can ultimately cause brain fog due to a lack of sleep.

Methylation Impairments

Methylation is a big biochemical superhighway that happens 1 billion times every second in the human body. It makes your brain healthy and it can help detox your body. People who have hereditary methylation problems may often have a difficult time detoxing and their body may ultimately not be able to regulate or manage inflammation, including neuroinflammation.

El Paso Chiropractor Dr. Alex Jimenez
Brain inflammation has been associated with a variety of signs and symptoms, including brain fog. Inflammation in the brain can also cause a variety of neurological diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease. Inflammation is an essential function of the human body, however, too much brain inflammation, can cause brain fog and other health issues. In the following article, inflammation and brain fog can be caused by a variety of factors, including leaky gut syndrome and inflammatory foods, among others. - Dr. Alex Jimenez D.C., C.C.S.T. Insight

In honor of Governor Abbott's proclamation, October is Chiropractic Health Month. Learn more about the proposal.

Of all of the wide array of health issues that healthcare professionals talk to their patients about, there is one which is tremendously overlooked and not taken seriously: brain fog. Many people suffer from brain fog and fatigue and unfortunately, many people are left to fend for themselves when it comes to this health issue. The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal and nervous health issues as well as functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. We use functional health protocols to treat injuries or chronic disorders of the musculoskeletal system. To further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900 .

Curated by Dr. Alex Jimenez

  • Cole, William. “Here's Exactly What To Do About Brain Fog: A Functional Medicine Expert Explains.” Mindbodygreen, Mindbodygreen, 17 Feb. 2017,

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