Trying to find the cause of my Brain Fog

Back then I was not tracking-i think it was a combination of everything I think that helped. I just tried things one at time trail and error style and little by little it helped over time. I think unless you have a bigger issue with your health it might just one factor like environment or food, hopefully less complex than what I had to go through!

Oh forgot it on my list ozone therapy really cleared my brain fog almost instantly after a session- I think this was due to the oxygenation it wa giving me and perhaps the antiviral effects.

How does eating 20g almonds daily affect outcomes?

Key terms:

I wanted to see if eating almonds would affect my brain fog

Data collection & Procedure

I ate 20g almonds each day.

I tracked brain fog in “Track & Graph”


I did experience more brain fog when eating almonds.

The reason for the brain fog before the experiment and after was because I had other experiments that caused brain fog.



Almonds did seem to raise my brain fog.


But why did I only experience brain fog on some of the days, even though I ate 20g almonds each day?

Maybe the almonds were just too old?

Probably need more experiments to verify the results.

Future experiments

Future experiments could involve:

  • Trying not to eat (And making sure that the food isn’t too old)
    • Almonds
    • Walnuts
    • Gluten
    • Wheat
    • Lactose
  • Spending more time relaxing

How does eating 20g peanut butter daily affect brain fog?

I wanted to see if Peanut butter would affect me brain fog

Data collection & Procedure

I ate 20g peanut butter in my oatmeal each day for 3 days.

I tracked brain fog in “Track & Graph” app.




It did seem very likely that peanut butter was the cause of the brain fog, and had a delayed effect.


Maybe the experiment has to be tried again.

Future experiments

Future experiments could involve:

  • Trying not to eat (And making sure that the food isn’t too old)
    • Almonds
    • Walnuts
    • Gluten
    • Wheat
    • Lactose
  • Spending more time relaxing

Hi Lars,

How are you quantifying your brain fog? From looking at the data it seems like the scale goes from 0-11, correct?

One suggestion would be to track multiple variables in different columns of the spreadsheet. That way you could do a multiple regression analysis to estimate how much each variable can predict your brain fog.

For example, something like this:

Brain Fog (Y) Almonds (X1) Peanut Butter (X2) X3 X4
0 10 0
5 7 10
7 15 5

Once you have this data, you can run a multiple regression analysis with brain fog as the dependent variable (Y), and all the different independent variables (X) that you’re tracking. By looking at the statistical output you could get much more insight into the issue.

If you have access to a tool like SPSS they have a great “automatic linear modeling” function that simplifies the process quite a bit, but it can also be done in Excel.

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I don’t use a spreadsheet at all for tracking :slight_smile: I just entered the data for illustration.
I track brain fog from 1-5 and then find the sum for the day. (So maybe this isn’t an accurate way of reflecting the intensity, but it gives an idea).

I use “Track & graph” to track brain fog and other metrics.
Tracking all the food I eat is cumbersome, so I usually just write down any changes I make to my diet:

Yes, perhaps I should be looking into multiple regression analysis!

Have you tried taking an MRT food sensitivity test? I’ve had problems with brain fog too, took an MRT test two weeks ago (which tests inflammatory response against 200+ foods) and it turned out I was most sensitive to a lot of my core diet including wheat and black pepper. I’ve cut them out and feel substantially better.

I dropped in the MRT results below. Most importantly for the context of this thread, I wouldn’t have predicted I was sensitive to most of these foods.

That’s very interesting! He went a long way to uncover the causes.
After watching it I’m considering if I should take some neuropsychological tests!
I know when I have my brain fog and I know when I don’t have it, but I don’t know exactly what it is or exactly how it affect my mental faculties. At the moment I know now that I become confused, unable to complete all my thoughts and it seems to affect my short term memory

I have considered if I should buy one of those food sensitivity tests, but I read some research that indicated they weren’t that precise.
At the moment I’m just eliminating a couple of foods and then reintroducing one by one to see if I detect any changes :slight_smile:
But am still considering buying a food sensitivity test to guide my experimentation :slight_smile:

Interesting which research did you read? I hired a dietitian and she swears by the MRT test and says it’s the best we have for intelligently planning an elimination diet.

That said, I heard some criticisms about MRT accuracy too afterwards but haven’t looked into them much.

I’m curious to hear more about hour results doing the elimination diet one by one

This is some good reading about food sensitivity tests:

By introducing things one at a time, I’ve discovered that peanut butter and almonds both seemed to be an issue, and Skyr doesn’t seem to be a big issue, but maybe skyr is a problem if I eat too much at a time

Were you actively tracking any measure of brain fog tha you could quantify? Like memory test reslts for example, or even time taken to complete a puzzle? I think reflecting on brain fog without measuring it even semi-objectively leaves you wide open to biases and a bit of the placebo effect. Not criticising your experiment of course; just suggesting you take the next step and formalize it!

Thanks for posting Nicholas. This is a topic of keen interest on the forum, but the discussion tends to be scattered about in various threads. A popular tool for measuring cognition is Quantified Mind, which came up in this recent thread. Definitely interested if you are trying anything in this vein.

Thanks for the link, much obliged!

I totally agree with you! My plan is to try quantified mind :slight_smile:
I hope that it will help me more accurately diagnose the problem, be able to describe it to others and also measure if experiments work :slight_smile:

Here are my thoughts as someone who knows the brain fog too well, thanks to my ADHD.

Once you figure out the most convenient way for yourself to track when you have brain fog, I suggest you’ll track the following:

  • sleep - if I don’t get enough high qualify sleep it is the most likely cause of my brain fog. High qualify = I have long uninterrupted sleep sequences and get enough deep and REM sleep.

My main source of sleep data is currently Dreem 2 but I have used Fitbit, Oura and Apple Watch as well. I have learned that checking the total time spend in bed/sleep probably isn’t enough.

  • Track alcohol consumption (if you use it). If I drink even a little alcohol today, I will experience brain fog DAY AFTER TODAY.

Pay attention to the time of day of your brain fog. For example I have an energy and focus dip around 4-6pm. My mom has the same, so I’d say it is biological/genetic for us.

If I haven’t gotten good quality sleep or have had alcohol two days earlier or have done something that has drained my mental energy, I’ll experience major brain fog around that time, regardless of what I have eaten or done before.

I have found Endel app to predict quite well when my energy levels (and therefore focus etc) is in the rise, peaking, falling or recharging, too.

Oh, one “objective” way to measure your brain fog could be using Muse -headband (I have Muse S) and do a 5-10 minute meditation always at the same time of the day when you’re most likely to have brain fog. I got totally different results when I’m experiencing the brain fog than when I’m not.

Hi @LNP, I’m sorry I didn’t realize today in the self-research meeting that you are LNP here on the forum. I should have! Brain fog is a common topic and I thought you were two different people. (It wasn’t very smart of me to suggest you start a project log since you’ve been posting here and I’ve been following it.)

From the evidence you’ve gathered so far, it looks like you have some good hints that peanut butter (and perhaps almonds) make it more likely you will suffer brain fog. You also have some other more detailed questions about the nature of the brain fog.

A few suggestions based on what you’ve done so far.

  1. For testing interventions: Definitely keep tracking your subjective experience of brain fog. It is much more important that your observations be reliable and valid and convenient to consistently collect than that they be precise. A crude question like “did I experience any brain fog today” is likely to be more useful over time (if you can get an observation recorded every day) than a cognitive assessment that you can only do once in a while.

  2. For more clarity about the phenomenon: Here you should be prepared to test with the full Quantified Mind range of tests a few times to get a baseline, and then a few times when you feel severe brain fog; and, do this a few times over a few weeks. You don’t just want to know what deficits show up, you want to know if they show up consistently. How long do these take you? I’ve only used a few of them, but may try them out if you are doing it so I can keep up. I’m interested in what you learn.

One of the questions you posed last year was:

why did I only experience brain fog on some of the days, even though I ate 20g almonds each day?

This presumes a fairly simple causal relationship. As other posters have noted, it may be multi-causal. Perhaps eating almonds makes it more likely you will experience brain fog but doesn’t cause brain fog under all circumstances. I think you evidence so far calls out for a very simple experiment of eliminating tree nuts and peanuts for a couple of months and getting a brain fog measure at least 1x a day , then reintroducing them.

Please report your QM lessons if any. Thank you for posting your project.

I don’t if this helps but I’ll share what I learned about some of my diet related brain fog. Last year whilst trying to combat feeling sad and down due to the winter cold here (SAD) i looked for ways to boost my serotonin. I found that about 100g of peanuts/peanut butter made me super sleepy and i would nod off for about 4 hours or so. That wasn’t the intention but it was effective :slight_smile: I know i’m not allergic so considered it might be related to something like the food coma situation where you eat too much and can barely keep your eyes awake. I’ve used the trick many times with nuts now to get a good catnap (it’s as simple as eat the whole packet! buuut I’m a tiny fella, ymmv) Anyway, I need to research more , but my “Point” is that i think it’s to do with tryptophan and how that connects to serotonin and melatonin. I think carbs and insulin have a link as well certainly brainfog hits me with high carb foods (especially with refined fructose like jams or undiluted apple juice). I should say I test negative for diabetes though there is history in the family. Perhaps eating a meal dense in carbs + tryptophan would knock me right out ? Shall I try around Thanksgiving? Jokes aside, I think one way to test if I’m on the right path would be a wearable blood glucose monitor. Last year I couldn’t afford one so I went keto instead. To see if reducing/ eliminating big insulin spikes helped. I suspected I had adhd and because of work and responsibilities i just couldn’t afford any more random extra confusion inconsistency. i already had too much with my suspected condition. So dietary brain fog had to go. Keto helped. My occasional successful retest of the nut thing showed it that it was at least predictable. I have since gotten a formal diagnosis confirming my adhd and have medication and am maintaining keto and overall my brainfog is gone. At some point i’ll retest carbs and nuts just in case my issues were actually adhd related but considering the noticeable results i suspect they were separate compounding issues. Anyway, I hope my waffle helps to offer you a direction you haven’t looked into before. Best of luck :slight_smile:

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Okay, so your problems came from ADHD and maybe also nuts/carbs?