Brain fog refers to the feeling of mental sluggishness or confusion. It’s caused by several different things, including anemia, brain injuries, hypothyroidism, lack of oxygen to the brain due to heart disease or respiratory problems. This article will cover some natural supplements that have been shown in human studies to improve mood, reduce stress and anxiety levels, and even help with dementia symptoms. Of course, these are just some emerging research findings that need further verification before being implemented into clinical practice.
1. Lion’s Mane Mushroom Supplement
Since memories and attention span seem to get correlated with the brain’s energy levels, Lion’s Mane supplementation has been investigated for its relationship with memory and attention. Study shows it reduces memory loss as well as enhances cognitive functions such as learning and problem-solving. Also, it can help improve mood and decrease stress. In a small study, middle-aged participants who consumed a specific Lion’s Mane supplement had reductions in stress and anxiety levels. In another small study done on children with ADHD, it was observed that the participants had a significant reduction in their psychological distress levels after consuming Lion’s Mane mushroom daily.
2. Shiitake Mushroom Supplement
According to natural medicine blogs, Shiitake mushrooms are currently being studied at the University of Washington for their effects on memory loss. A recent study by the same university found that Shiitake extract could significantly improve memory function among patients with Alzheimer’s disease and cognitive capacities in healthy people. These cognitive improvements can be attributed to increasing brain acetylcholine levels, directly related to memory preservation. Its mood-boosting effects are attributed to the presence of the compound eritadenine, which regulates norepinephrine levels. Norepinephrine regulates mood and cognition.
Natural medicine blogs also say that Shiitake mushrooms contain the compound lentinan, which is not only an immune system modulator but also protects the body from oxidative stress. It also increases the production of superoxide dismutase, an antioxidant enzyme responsible for neutralizing free radicals. Shiitake mushrooms are, in fact, one of Asia’s most treasured medicinal plants.
3. Turkey Tail Mushrooms Supplement
Turkey Tail mushrooms (also known as “Turkey Tail Mushrooms” or “goat’s head”) are highly concentrated bioactive called agaritine. Agaritine is extracted from these mushrooms and is currently studied to improve cognitive function in different species of animals, including humans. In laboratory studies, it has shown potential to increase brain acetylcholine levels and has also demonstrated low toxicity levels in animals. In earlier studies, the study shows that agaritine can stimulate the neurons of the hippocampus and improve memory and learning. These effects on brain function can get attributed to its ability to reduce oxidative stress and inflammation. It also enhances the activity of acetylcholinesterase, which collaterally prevents the breakdown of acetylcholine in the body.
Agaritine also has mood-boosting effects. As mentioned earlier, acetylcholine is directly related to memory function. However, it is also the neurotransmitter that regulates our moods. Agaritine has been shown to increase the concentration of acetylcholine in the synaptic cleft, which can lead to increased concentrations in the brain, thus improving memory and reducing stress.
4. Reishi Mushroom Supplement
Reishi mushrooms are a type of mushroom that is popular in Asia for their medicinal properties. It has been commonly used as a traditional herbal medicine throughout the region for over two hundred years. Study shows that Reishi exhibited potent anti-oxidant and immune-enhancing effects on cells of the brain, which can lead to better cognitive functioning. The study shows that Reishi mushrooms possess anti-anxiety properties. It has also been observed to enhance immune function and regulate hormones, especially estrogen. Among its many medicinal effects, Reishi mushrooms are known for protecting the brain from degradation. One study found that its neuroprotective effects on cells of the brain were linked to the presence of polysaccharides (compounds that are essential for cell growth and functioning).
5. Chaga Mushroom Supplement
Chaga mushrooms are currently being studied for its ability to slow down the progression of Alzheimer’s disease. In a study published in the fall of 2006, the study found that Chaga mushrooms were able to reduce levels of Beta-amyloid plaques, thus slowing down the progress of the disease. It is also being researched for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It has demonstrated the ability to reduce oxidative stress and inhibit inflammatory mechanisms in the brain.
6. Cordyceps Mushroom Supplement
Cordyceps mushrooms are used for their immune-boosting effects. They are potent antioxidants that can help prevent neuron degeneration. The study shows it helps the brain heal from chronic inflammation. The section of the brain that is most commonly affected by inflammatory cytokines is called the hippocampus. Cordyceps has been found to reduce inflammation in the hippocampus, thus helping it to heal from disease and degeneration. It can also protect the brain from oxidative damage that is a result of chronic inflammation.
Several different mushrooms can help to improve brain function and cognitive performance. Nutrition and the uptake of these nutrients also play a key role in ensuring that we get enough of what we need to support our brain health and cognitive functioning. Make sure that you are getting enough vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that are necessary for brain health.