Brain fog in menopause is real, more evidence uncovered

Menopause Brain Fog: What Is It and How to Treat It?

Many women experiencing menopause often describe brain fog, but there was not enough evidence to support such claims. Well, additional research findings have just come out which reveal that brain fog in menopause is a real thing.

Brain fog is used to describe forgetfulness, difficulty concentrating, and inability to think clearly.

Brain fog as a result of menopause is neither a permanent condition nor does it increase the risk of dementia later on in life. But in the moment, it is a frustrating symptom to live with.

Low Estrogen during Menopause Leads to Brain Fog

The study, which builds upon objective evidence, found that a woman’s ability to carry about memory tasks becomes hindered when her estrogen begins to dip – around the age of 45 to 55.

Estrogen is related to activity in the hippocampus which is the area of the brain responsible for memory and thinking.

Roughly 60 percent of menopausal women report brain fog symptoms during menopause. The recent study adds to previous findings by offering better understanding of how estrogen plays a role in the brain.

The study was based on 200 women whose memory skills were tested along with undergoing a functional MRI to track brain activity.

The study found that on average women with lower estrodiol – a form of estrogen – performed worse on memory tests. Postmenopausal women also showed different brain activity in the hippocampus compared to premensopausal women. But these changes were not seen among all women which raises the question as to why some women experience such changes where others do not.

Researchers speculate that lifestyle habits of women may also offer protective effects from the decline of estrogen. For example, women who frequently exercise are less likely to experience brain fog which raises the possibility that exercise offers protective effects against lower estrogen.

Although more research is needed it does offer some relief to many women as it makes their condition normal. Women don’t have to fear that what they are experiencing is a result of them going “crazy”.

How to Treat Menopause Brain Fog

You don’t need to suffer from brain fog in menopause, as there are several different treatment methods available that can help boost mental clarity. These treatment methods include:

  • Eat a Healthy Diet: You want to ensure you are eating a diet that provides you with essential nutrients to support good health. You also want to incorporate foods that increase estrogen because many menopause symptoms result from low estrogen levels. Estrogen-rich foods include soybean products, flaxseeds, sesame seeds, beans, dried fruit, bran, nuts, alfalfa, chickpeas, olives and olive oil, peaches, strawberries, red wine, and multigrain bread.
  • Stay Hydrated: Even the slightest amount of dehydration is enough to shrink the brain, which can contribute to greater brain fog. Therefore, staying well hydrated will reduce brain shrinkage and reduce brain fog.
  • Lose the Belly Fat: Dementia and Alzheimer’s has been linked to being overweight, more so with the fat that accumulates around the abdomen. Studies have shown that reducing weight can help improve memory.
  • Make Sleep a Priority: Without proper sleep, the brain cannot restore itself, so “clutter” remains.
  • Exercise: Exercise can help reduce weight, help manage other menopausal symptoms, and reduce stress. Try and get at least 30 minutes a day of physical activity in order to maintain good health.
  • Meditate: Meditation helps to reduce stress which can worsen brain fog.
  • Try Acupuncture: Some studies on acupuncture have found it to improve menopause symptoms.

By adhering to these natural remedies for brain fog in menopause, you can reduce stress, feel better, and promote mental clarity so you can continue to partake in daily life.

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http://www.jneurosci.org/content/36/39/10163.short

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