Celiac brain fog is something many with celiac disease complain of. Here’s why this mental fog happens and 10 ways to cope with it.
As opposed to regular mental fog, celiac brain fog is a reaction to eating gluten in people with celiac. Essentially, it’s brain fog but celiac-related.
It’s not a widely accepted symptom and is generally poorly understood with celiac. Despite this, it remains one of the 300+ reported symptoms of celiac. Other symptoms include constipation, fatigue, nausea, diarrhea, bloating, headaches, and more.
While not widely accepted, it impacts many celiacs. In fact, a survey by Beyond Celiac reported that 89% of celiacs surveyed reported brain fog after eating gluten.
In that same survey by Beyond Celiac on the prevalence of brain fog in celiacs, they also polled respondents on how they’d describe it. Many described their brain fog as difficulty concentrating, mental confusion, forgetfulness, detachment, and grogginess.
As a celiac who gets brains fog after eating gluten, I would describe it as everything taking more mental energy to do. Even simple tasks feel 10x harder to manage with it.
It’s reported that celiac brain fog starts as soon as 30 minutes after eating gluten. It’s then reported to last anywhere from a few days to almost a week. Again, researchers don’t understand why the mental fog happens but that doesn’t discredit the fact that so many of us experience it.
It’s important to note that if your brain fog persists as you heal celiac, than it’s likely related to something else. You should feel better after healing celiac. Symptoms should only appear as you’re exposed to gluten. If you need help with self-soothing, check out this post on what to do when you’ve been glutened.
Perhaps the most important part of this discussion is how do you cope with mental fog? How do you cope with everything feeling so much harder?
Here’s a list of things that I do care for myself when I have brain fog:
Celiac brain fog is common with celiacs. However, it should resolve within 2-3 weeks of gluten exposure. And if it’s a symptom of your intestinal damage, it should improve as you heal. If it’s not getting better, it might be time to talk to a celiac specialist about what else could be going on.