Excellent article on natural brain fog cures

Hi All,

I just read an article about natural brain fog cures that I wanted to share with you. I read through it and think that this guy, Dr Axe, really seems to know what he’s talking about. I like his holistic approach and the way he links together a lot of wisdom that I’ve seen written elsewhere.

Happy reading -> Brain Fog Article by Dr Axe


Improving digestion to beat brain fog

Hi readers,

It’s now been 5 years since my brain fog began, and a little over 2 years since I began my road to recovery. I am now healthy and only suffer mild fog symptoms some mornings, but these are gone by about 8am.

The key to my recovery was the discovery that poor digestion was the cause of my fogginess, or my “spaghetti head”, as I like to call it. The challenge for me was that even after I’d learned that good digestion was critical to my recovery, I had to identify what worked for me and what didn’t. As I’ve discussed in my other posts, meat and dairy were the main causes of my poor digestion and resulting fogginess. But greatly reducing my intake of these food groups still didn’t leave me with perfect clarity each day. Getting 7.5-8 hours of sleep helps me, as well as going to bed and waking at a fairly consistent time (asleep at 10:30, awake at 6:10 is my usual routine). After all this time, I’m still not sure how much exercise really helps in reducing brain fog. However, exercise helps relieve any anxiety that may otherwise arise. Having said that, I still exercise 2-3 times a week because the health benefits and stress relief are virtually indisputable.

Even though I’ve changed my diet to become (very close to) vegan, there are still a few foods that disagree with me and even upon careful scanning of the ingredients, I cannot for the life of me figure out why they are causing me issues; one is pasta, even the buckwheat-based ones; the other is pizza bases. Does anyone have any idea as to why these would be a problem? It’s not gluten as I eat bread every day with no problems.

I have recently discovered a supplement which helps my digestion which I wanted to share with you. I have started taking a digestive aid and have noticed that my morning fog has improved even more. I have tried two different brands of digestive aid (Eagle Vegie Digestaid and Blackmores Digestive Aid), both are vegan-friendly. Although they both help relieve fog symptoms, I have found the Eagle product to be more effective. I take two tablets of the Vegie Digestaid with my dinner, and one with my breakfast each day.

I hope that anyone suffering from brain fog might find this post useful. If you’d like to add anything from your own experience, or would like more details about mine, feel free to post a comment (I’d love to get my first one!!!) or send me an email at spaghettiheadmaster@gmail.com.

All the best,


So now I’m vegan, here’s what I eat to keep brain fog away

It’s been three years since I first discovered that my brain fog was being triggered by eating meat and dairy. From that point on, I eliminated dairy from my diet completely and began to reduce my meat consumption. It took me another year or so to realise that I felt much better when I completely eliminated meat from my diet. So I’ve been effectively vegan for the past two years and you’re probably wondering what do I actually eat each day to fill up and stay healthy. Well, here’s a run down:


Every morning I eat home-made muesli, made from as many of the following ingredients as I can muster:

  • Sesame seeds
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Pepitas/pumpkin seeds
  • Chia seeds
  • Linseed/flaxseed
  • Coconut flakes
  • Psyllium husks.

I buy all the ingredients in bulk from the internet (from Sydney-based Honest to Goodness) and mix them once a month in a large Tupperware container. I add unsweetened almond and coconut milk or just almond milk and some honey. I’ll admit that it gets a bit boring sometimes so now I usually add some of my favourite “normal” cereals such as Special K or Weet-Bix.

I also make “green drinks” every morning in my Nutri Bullet. I try to use two types of greens, usually kale, silverbeet/chard and/or celery. In addition to these greens, I add 3-4 types of fruit, usually banana, apple, pear, orange, grapefruit, kiwi fruit, strawberries, blueberries, watermelon, papaya and/or paw paw. From what I’ve read, it’s pretty important to eat leafy dark green vegetables to maintain good calcium intake.

The final thing I eat each morning is some natural peanut butter (ie. just peanuts) and jam on dark rye bread. I don’t think this is quite as healthy as the muesli and green drink but it doesn’t cause me any problems and it’s yum (so bite me)!

Morning Snacks

When I first cut out meat and dairy, I found it very difficult to fill up at first but if you stock your pantry with the right ingredients, it’s not too hard. Here are the things I usually snack on at home or in the office:

  • Unsalted mixed nuts (almonds, walnuts, brazil nuts, macadamias and/or cashews), sometimes with a date and coconut flakes
  • Humus and celery and carrot sticks (I really like Obela Classic Hommus)
  • Dolmades (vine leaves filled with white rice).


When I’m at home, I normally make a massive salad and try to keep in mind the guiding principle of “all the colours of the rainbow”. Here are my “go to” salad ingredients:

  • Mixed lettuce leaves
  • Tomatoes
  • Cucumbers
  • Spanish/red onions
  • Avocado
  • Red or yellow capsicum/peppers
  • Sweet potato or pumpkin roasted in coconut or olive oil
  • Sprouts (any type)
  • Mixed beans from a can
  • Cup mushrooms sautéed in vegetable oil, salt and pepper
  • Seed mix (sesame, sunflower and pumpkin seeds)
  • Humus
  • Dressing, 2 parts olive oil to 1 part balsamic vinegar

Do you know that tired feeling you get after you eat something like pasta or pizza for lunch? I guarantee you that you won’t feel any of that after eating a salad made from some or most of these ingredients. I’m not going to say you will feel amazing, you won’t, but you will feel pretty much the same as you did before you had lunch, just fuller.

I’m pretty busy with full-time work and a young family, so I don’t have time to make this salad every day, although when I make it, I always make enough for lunch the next day as well. But when I’m at work, I buy my lunch each day, and the following meals make up my repertoire:

  • Miso soup and vegetarian sushi without egg
  • Roasted vegetable and salad sandwich on brown bread
  • Falafel and salad sandwich on wholemeal bread
  • Salads comprising brown rice, quinoa, roasted vegetables, beetroot, legumes/pulses (you can usually find these sorts of salads at organic or new-age health bars)
  • Chilli and basil thai stir fry with tofu and vegetables (this dish doesn’t normally have any fish or oyster sauces, which don’t generally agree with me)
  • Thai green curry with tofu and vegetables, which contains coconut milk rather than dairy
  • Subway Veggie Pattie with no cheese, all the salads and sweet onion sauce

After lunch I always have a couple of pieces of Lindt 70% dark chocolate, my refined sugar hit for the day. My afternoon snacks are pretty much the same as my morning snacks mentioned above, although I usually have some Ryvitas with humus instead of vegetable sticks. I generally also have some fruit, normally a banana or apple.


Dinner is often not as well planned out as my other meals but I still have a list of “regulars” which make being vegan easier. I find that if you have to think too much about what you’re going to have for dinner, you either get a bit deflated by the limitations of being a time-poor vegan or you just start getting really hungry! So here are my regulars, which I usually have with a simple salad of mixed lettuce leaves, tomato, cucumber, avocado and spanish/red onion with olive oil:

  • Lentil patties (in the frozen aisle of the supermarket) with sweet thai chilli sauce
  • Steamed shitaake mushroom and vegetable dumplings (same aisle as above) with soy sauce
  • Fried “Chinese” flavoured tofu (different aisle) with brown or white rice
  • Burritos with kidney bean, tomato and onion sauce, mixed leaves, chopped tomatoes, cucumbers, spanish/red onions, guacamole and taco sauce. Guacamole is a great snack with some corn chips, I make mine from avocado, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper.
  • Dahl (made from lentils) with brown rice
  • Roasted sweet potato and pumpkin, baked with olive or coconut oil, salt and pepper


I guess I don’t get all that excited by dessert any more, although you can buy or make some pretty tasty vegan treats. I usually just have a little bit of chopped fruit.

In terms of keeping brain fog away, I have found that I feel better the next day if I don’t overeat at dinner time. In fact, the earlier I eat the better, as it gives my digestive system more time to process the food before morning. And, as I’ve mentioned in another post, the mornings are always the worst in terms of feeling foggy.

Let me know if you’d like any more detail about my diet. I’d also love to hear from anyone who has any easy-to-make suggestions to add to mine.

Happy (and healthy) eating!


Live blood analysis - 11 September 2012

These 2 amazing photos show how my brain fog lifted at a cellular level

To some extent, the story of my recovery from brain fog is lacking in scientific detail. This is largely because I couldn’t absorb most of the detail that my medical practitioner was telling me. My spaghetti head just wouldn’t allow it. The first time I saw this terrific lady, she asked me what I ate each day, checked my pulse and took a small droplet of blood and put it under a microscope. The first picture below shows what my blood cells looked like under 100 times magnification when I first saw her. Notice how jagged all of the cells are. She told me that I had the blood of a 90 year old and that my digestion was terrible. Luckily, she said it was easily fixed!

Live blood analysis - 11 September 2012

Live blood analysis – 11 September 2012

After this consultation I was told to eliminate dairy from my diet and to reduce my meat intake to 3-4 meals per week. I was also told to take a vegetable-based digestive aid and some tablets to build up my gut flora. I also started taking dairy free probiotics each day. I don’t think I quite stuck to the meat limitation but I definitely halved my previous meat intake which was pretty much twice a day. It’s quite miraculous, but apart from starting to feel a lot less foggy within 48 hours of these changes, the change in my live blood sample in less than 6 months is just phenomenal. The photo below shows how my cells had recovered to be perfectly round, just like they should be in a health young man.

Live blood analysis - 28 February 2013

Live blood analysis – 28 February 2013

I’m not a doctor and didn’t even expect that you could see things like this under a plain old microscope, but I think it’s amazing. I can’t tell you how thankful I am to this medical practitioner, she is so much more enlightened than most GPs. I still don’t really understand how she knew it was dairy and meat that were causing me so many issues, and not gluten. Either way, I would highly recommend that anyone suffering from brain fog seek out a medical professional who is going to focus on digestion and diet as the primary method for trying to tackle this soul-destroying disease. I feel pretty sure that pills and procedures are not the way to go.

How I found the solution to my brain fog misery

I find it interesting to look back and connect the dots which led to my recovery, to identify the key moments or decisions which put me on a path to mental clarity. As Steve Jobs highlighted, I can only really see these connections now, having the benefit of hindsight.

In October 2011 I read a book my Mum gave me called “Manhood” by Steve Biddulph (Amazon link) which I thoroughly recommend that everyone read, male or female. The book demonstrated to me that the “big boys don’t cry” mentality that many men are brought up with is both unhealthy and destructive. I read this book and I loved it. It empowered me to realise that many of the fears and insecurities that I had secretly harboured my whole life were normal and nothing to be ashamed of. This was the first major dot.

At that time I was actively seeking remedies for my brain fog. My wife and I visited the Mind, Body & Spirit expo in Sydney’s Darling Harbour in late 2011 to see what alternative remedies might be available. As I walked through the stalls of clairvoyants, candle sellers and yoga practitioners, I noticed Steve Biddulph’s book on the shelf of a rather nondescript stall. My interest was piqued so I asked the two men running the stall what their organisation was about. It turned out that they were promoting the Mankind Project (MKP), a not-for-profit group which helps men to be the best they can be through collaboration with other men. I know the idea of this kind of group would freak most Australian men out. I can imagine the eyes rolling because I think I would have done exactly that five years ago. Check out their website which provides a lot more information about the work they do and the personal development that can be achieved.

So I gave the guys at the stall my email address. I hadn’t heard anything for about four months when I received an email telling me about an upcoming New Warriors Adventure Training weekend. I really felt I needed some type of transformation at that time so I signed up with little hesitation. The weekend was transformative, I met some very interesting people and learned a lot about life. One of the men I met during the weekend mentioned to me that his son had had some medical issues and had been treated by a terrific doctor who practiced integrative medicine. Weeks later he gave me this doctor’s details.

About four months later, after much deliberation, I decided to quit the job I had spent the previous 18 months working in. I felt stressed and really wasn’t enjoying what I was doing. I needed a break. When I gave my notice, my boss’ boss made the compassionate and supportive decision to give me a month’s paid leave to consider what I wanted to do next, within the company or without, no strings attached.

I took a few days away from my family in the Blue Mountains to get my thoughts together, as best I could under the cloud of my spaghetti head. I read a book on how to find fulfilling work and wrote a list of all the things I should do to find a more enjoyable career and to get my head straight. One of those things was to visit the doctor to whom I was referred.

I made an appointment to see the integrative medical practitioner, Marilyn Golden, on Sydney’s lower north shore. It took me two years to get to this point and my two visits to see her changed my life, and quickly. Within a week of my first appointment I felt so much better. It took another 18 months to get back to perfect (if there is such a thing) but the changes were dramatic. I will write more about my treatment in other posts.

A year after seeing Marilyn, I took some time off work and went down to Merimbula on the coast with my family for a holiday. I’d say I was 90% better by this point but still suffered from the fog most mornings (see my post on morning fog). I had been keeping a food/stress/medication/activity diary for about 6 weeks before this holiday but had been unable to identify what was causing this remaining fog. Right near the end of the trip, I got up early with the kids and then had the luxury of going back to bed for another hour or two’s sleep. It was on this morning that I discovered that the asthma puffer I was taking at the time, Seretide, was contributing to my fogginess. I have since changed to using the lowest dosage of Flixotide that I can, while still managing my asthma safely.

The final dot happened just last week. I still occasionally get a little foggy for about an hour in the morning. I had been on such a long journey of eliminating possible causes that I had pretty much become resigned to this mild, remnant symptom. Last week, one of my colleagues at work almost died. He had had a continuous migraine for 48 hours over the weekend. On the Monday morning, he still had the migraine and thought that a really hot shower might help clear the pain. Unfortunately, he collapsed in the shower, after a throbbing pain developed in is head and is heart. The good news for him and his young family is that he is now OK. While speaking to him about the incident, he explained to me that a migraine is to some extent caused by the expansion of cells in the brain. It turns out that the hot water from the shower also has the effect of causing the cells in the brain to expand. I have been taking lukewarm showers for the past week and my remaining morning brain fog has disappeared altogether.

I think there are a few morals of this story. Firstly, I don’t believe that the exact things that have triggered my spaghetti head will necessarily be the same for everyone, but I do think that everyone should look at their dietary options first. And I don’t think you should necessarily consult with your regular GP either. My cousin just completed his medical training at Sydney’s premier university and told me that across the whole multi-year degree, a grand total of 2 hours of tuition were dedicated to nutrition. Most of our doctors have only been trained to prescribe pills and procedures to “fix” ailments such as this. I’m sure that my brain fog was cured through a simple dietary change.

Secondly, it was really important to my long-term success that I continued to look for answers that worked for me. Don’t give up, there is a reason that you’re getting brain fog and it’s probably not primarily caused by stress. I recommend that you keep a food/stress/medication/activity diary and listen to your body after you eat.

The final moral of my story is that it was through opening myself up to the universe and talking to the people around me that helped me find solutions. Try to keep an open mind. It is thoroughly depressing having spaghetti head every day and I don’t think I would have been able to live like that for the rest of my life. My belief that I would find a way to work through this major life challenge was the foundation of my recovery.

Please get in touch with me if any of this resonates with you or if you have any questions.

All the best,


The mornings are always the foggiest

I’ve always found that the mornings were the foggiest time of day. It’s taken me a long time to figure out why this is the case. The life-changing medical practitioner I saw explained that this was to do with the Eastern concept of “damp” or “heat” building up in the body overnight and being released during the day. I haven’t researched these concepts in any depth but I can relate to the idea of a build up and clearing of some elements in my body throughout the day. I have come to know that what I consume and the activity that I do during the day are responsible for the level of build up and the speed of release.

The things that contributed the most to my morning fog, number 1 being the most damaging, were the following:

  1. Eating meat, fish, eggs or dairy foods in the evening
  2. Eating too much in the evening
  3. Not sleeping enough
  4. Having a hot shower in the morning
  5. Taking Seretide in the morning to treat my asthma (I recommend Flixotide instead)
  6. Drinking alcohol in the evening

Do you ever notice that your stomach churns and bubbles after you eat certain foods? Before I became foggy, I never paid any attention to how my stomach reacted to food. I recommend listening closely to your body and seeing if certain foods are disrupting your digestion. Discovering the link between poor digestion and brain fog is the most important discovery in recovering from the illness.

Unsurprisingly, what I recommend doing is pretty much the opposite of the list above. If you haven’t already started down the vegan path, I recommend that you consider it. My diet is based on eating lots of fruit, vegetables, nuts, seeds and grains. I never thought I would change my diet so significantly, but there is simply no comparison between a life eating what you want and being in a haze most of the time, and a life of being vegan and feeling clear and energetic each day. I used to eat meat twice a day and loads of dairy with every meal. I started the change in my diet by removing dairy immediately, as suggested by my doctor, and reducing my meat intake to once a day. Once I felt the benefits, and I did within 48 hours, it became easy to transition to veganism.

I will explain more about the hot showers in another post.

All the best,