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getting rid of brain fog

What’s The Episode About?

In this episode, I’ll be sharing with you how Vitamin D3 may very well be one of the easiest hacks to help you eliminate brain fog. Most people don’t realize that Vitamin D is not a vitamin at all, but a hormone. Knowing this alone will really help you understand how it will help impact the brain fog you may be experiencing. 

Vitamin D3 is responsible for hundreds of metabolic processes within our bodies, and inside and outside our cells. I’m going to take a broader approach to this and tell you why Vitamin D3 is important to your general health, including in getting rid of brain fog, so stay tuned to learn more.  

Key Points Discussed:

  • The genetic impact that vitamin D3 has on the body (02:03)
  • The most misunderstood and overlooked laboratory result (04:51)
  • Vitamin D3 levels and cardiovascular risk (10:36)
  • Vitamin D deficiency causes a faster rate of cognitive decline, studies show (17:17)
  • The best source of Vitamin D3 (21:38)
  • Getting rid of that nagging voice inside your head (24:14)

Where Can You Learn More?


When Was It Published?

August 7, 2019

Episode Transcript

Disclaimer:    The Transcript Is Auto-Generated And May Contain Spelling And Grammar Errors

00:00          In today’s episode of The Optimal CEO Podcast, I’ll be sharing with you how Vitamin D3 may very well be one of the easiest hacks to help you eliminate brain fog. So stay tuned to find out more.


00:14          Here at the optimal CEO podcast, we help CEO entrepreneurs who love taking ownership of their wellness journey, but because they know it’s their most prized investment and when their state of wellness is at its peak, their income source. We want to help relieve CDO entrepreneurs from the pressure of unnecessary health exposure so they can be highly focused on growing their business and physically optimize for the journey so they can enjoy getting there.


00:49          Hi, I’m Dr. Brian Brown and I’d like to personally welcome you to today’s podcast episode. Thank you for joining me. Ask any of my clients and they will tell you that I affectionately call vitamin D3, “Sunshine in a bottle.” This is potent stuff. No kidding. And yes, I’m a snob when it comes to Vitamin D3. It has to be D3. And there’s a lot of junk vitamin Ds on the market out there. There’ll be D2s, there’ll be some other variants of vitamin D that are upstream or downstream and the metabolism pathway, and that’s a lot of mumbo jumbo you don’t need to know about. Just know that there’s a bunch of junk out there, and it has to be vitamin D3. There are some very inferior and ineffective products on the market, so buyer beware. So here’s some facts. Most people don’t realize that vitamin D is not a vitamin at all.


01:36          It’s really a hormone. Now, that may surprise you or it may not, but what’s even more surprising is this, researchers have found that vitamin D3 is responsible for hundreds of metabolic processes within your body, inside your cells, and out. Some speculate that it may even be in the thousands. In a recent genetic study looking at very low doses of vitamin D3, about 400 international units per day, researchers wanted to look at the genetic impact that vitamin D3 has on the body. Now imagine that every gene in your body has a dimmer switch. Kind of like the light switch on the wall that maybe your dining room has, where you can dim the light up or down in intensity. So, when a gene is dialed up or intensified, or dialed down and suppressed, those control the activities of that gene. We call this up regulation and down-regulation. These researchers wanted to find out what vitamin D3 did to dial-up or dial down the intensity of inflammatory provoking genes.


02:42          That means genes that actually promote or down-regulate dialed down inflammation. So, they measured 291 different genes and found that 82 genes that make inflammation worse, were actually dialed down, which is a good thing, and 209 genes that make inflammation better were dialed up. All 291 genes were positively affected by Vitamin D3. Now, I know this is not about brain fog, but the crazy thing is, I think we’re only hitting the tip of the iceberg as vitamin D3 is being shown to help reduce cardiovascular death risk as well as all-cause-mortality. That means death from any cause. It seems to be helping in certain types of cancer treatment and prevention, weight loss, thyroid health, bone density improvement, and even depression. Now, before we get too much further, hear me when I say this. It may be too presumptive to say that vitamin D3 actually treats these conditions right now, but we can say that they support these conditions when the information is available.


03:51          I’ll point out studies that are very specific for specific conditions. Either way, vitamin D3 is proving to be essential and very beneficial and supporting a whole host of conditions in the body, but back to the task at hand, let’s focus on brain fog. When it comes to hearing stories from clients about brain fog, there’s a lot of wrong thinking out there. I hear things like, what can you expect at your age? Just brain fog is normal. That’s totally normal for your age. All your lab work is normal. There’s nothing wrong. I can’t find anything wrong, and this is coming from like a medical provider or maybe you’ve got too much on your plate and you need to de-stress your life. When it comes to vitamin D3 specifically, I hear things like vitamin D only helps with making bones stronger and here’s a really good one.


04:40          Don’t get too much of that. Vitamin D, it can be dangerous. All of these ways of thinking of crazy vitamin D3 is essential to hundreds, maybe even thousands of metabolic processes in the body. Yet it’s the most misunderstood and overlooked laboratory result on your lab report. And if that isn’t crazy enough, what’s worse? Is there studies that will show vitamin D3 doesn’t work for condition X? Well, what do I mean by that? I know it sounds crazy that there are studies out there that show it doesn’t work for a certain thing, and I’ll give you an example. There was a study published not too long ago. I lose track of time, maybe a six-seven years ago. It showed vitamin D3 did nothing to improve bone density in people over the age of 65 and when I saw that blurb come across my alerts, I thought I need to go look that study up.


05:29          So I looked the study up, come to find out it was done by an independent branch of the American Council on Aging, which is a federal government arm of, I think the NIH, don’t quote me on that, but the bottom line is it was a government study and they were looking at Vitamin D3’s effect on bone density and people age 65 and older and they prove that it did nothing to improve bone density. But when I took a look at the details of the study, they only use 400 international units. Now, other studies show that the minimum requirement for people age 65 and older is 10,000 international units per day. So the study was correct. 400 international units does nothing to improve bone density. Other studies show that 10,000 international units do. So the study was flawed from the very beginning. They used the wrong dose. So that’s just an example of how you can get online and you can look up vitamin D for blank condition x and you’ll find that, oh well this person over here says it works and this person over here says it doesn’t.


06:32          Chances are the person that says it works dug a little deeper and actually has more data to back them up. Uh, the person that says it doesn’t work, chances are they’re looking at a flawed study. It’s not their fault if they’re the ones that set the study up, it is their fault. But when we’re not assigning blame here, I just want you to be aware that there’s always going to be conflicting information out there and you really have to trust the person that’s interpreting information because it’s all in the interpretation and it’s all in how the studies were set up. Um, so anyway, I hope that helps you out and understanding the atmosphere that we live in, especially in the digital age where you can just hop on a computer and look up anything. There’s so much conflicting information out there. Now that we’re on the subject of laboratory results, let’s take a look at that, of the variety way of viewing these labs.


07:22          I’ve been checking vitamin D3 levels on all my new patients since around 2002 so I’ve got a lot of data. A couple of years ago I ran the numbers on this data and found out that around 72% of my clients had vitamin D3 levels that were 30 or below. This simply means that they needed vitamin D3 supplementation and that is called deficiency. There is a category called insufficiency that puts a person between 30 and 40 some studies or some experts will say 30 and 55 is an infamous vision level. I go with 30 to 40 is insufficient and below 30 is deficient. So when around those numbers, again, 72% were deficient below 30 and another 20% had mediocre levels in the insufficient ratings between the 30 and 40 that’s 92% of my client load that had horrible vitamin DS. And if you consider that functional medicine practitioners recognize that the largest health benefits are occur with vitamin D3 levels between 75 and a hundred than most people simply miss the mark.


08:34          Now I’ve had the distinct pleasure of meeting and studying under a doctor, Ernie Schafer, one of the world’s foremost cardiologists in the area of lipids. He’s actually has a phd in Lipid Ology. I didn’t even know this degrees existed, but he has a phd in lipidology. Literally writes the textbooks on treating this, but the cool thing about Dr is he’s also board certified endocrinology, so he has a very unique stance on the interrelationship of hormones and remember Vitamin D3 is a hormone and the body’s function in a cardiac manner. He was actually responsible along with Dr. Bella, asked the loss for creating an advanced lipid panel called the Boston Heart Diagnostics panel. There may be a few of you out there that have had those done. They later sold about, I guess it’s probably six years after they formed. They sold cash down, retired and good for them.


09:29          But the bottom line is when I asked Dr Schaefer the to explain a little bit more detailed, the intricacies of how hormones affect cardiovascular, he said, you can’t separate it. He said there’s no way to separate the hormone, the endocrine side of things from the cardiovascular side of things. He said. That’s why we are critically looking at vitamin D3 on the Boston heart diagnostic panel. So vitamin D3 was listed there on their cardiovascular panel. That speaks volumes. So I’ll back this up. In 2012 there was a Meta analysis study that just means these researchers sat down and they looked at all the data. There was in the medical literature and peer-reviewed articles that were talking about cardiovascular disease and vitamin D3 so 2012 Meta analysis study showed that the risk of cardiovascular disease increases with blood levels of vitamin D3 or when blood levels of vitamin D3 are at their lowest ranges, especially between eight and 24 so, and that’s huge.


10:36          And that’s the things that Dr Ernie Schaefer was talking about though. That’s the data that they were working on. When they knew that low vitamin D3 levels actually worse than cardiovascular outcomes, people were more prone to strokes. People were more prone to the street term clogged arteries, they were more prone to heart attacks, those types of things. Now let’s see how the United States compares to other countries. Sweden and numerous other countries have health recommendations that say vitamin D3 levels should be greater than 75 and they really don’t put an upper limit on it. They just said they needed to be over 75 u s recommendations say that they need to be between 30 and 75 now there’s a big disconnect there because remember between 30 and 40 is insufficient, so there’s a lot of people walking around out there. 20% of my client load anyway, a that walks around out there that would never be treated with vitamin D3 and their cardiovascular risk would be increased, and you’re talking about brain fog, have some clogged arteries in your neck.


11:35          You’re going to have some major brain fog, have clogged arteries in your heart or your brain, and you’re going to have some major brain fog. So cardiovascular Tazia in with the brain and brain fog anyway. So let’s get back and get the Swedish people in Sweden. The population there is encouraged to supplement because of being located so close to the Arctic Circle, uh, which limits their sunlight in certain parts of the year. So there was a Swedish study done that showed that 0.7% of the population of Sweden struggled with vitamin D3 deficiency compared to 36% deficiency. And the southern United States where sun exposure is it’s highest. Now let’s look at health outcomes compared to these two countries, the United States and Sweden for life expectancy, Sweden is ranked 16th in the world and the u s has ranked 47th in Sweden, only 9.7% of their country is classified as obese.


12:35          Whereas 30.6% of the u s is classified as obese. Why did I point these two parameters out? Well it’s because vitamin D3 is shown in studies to decrease all cause mortality and plain terms. It’s shown to extend life. It’s also shown to have side effects. Yes, you heard me. It’s listed as a side effect by the u s government, the FDA as loss of appetite and weight loss. Since when is that a bad thing? I mean if 30.6% of the population is struggling with obesity, maybe we need some more vitamin D. Okay. Now in the interest of full disclosure of vitamin D3 also has side effects of kidney stones and cardiac arrhythmias. Now I’m going to tell you there was a study done where a pharmaceutical company actually produced an over the counter 5,000 unit vitamin D, which is standard off the shelf over the counter vitamin D that you can buy at most health food stores.


13:35          And they also in the same plant produced or manufactured a 50,000 unit Vitamin D3, somewhere along the line in labeling or in packaging. They got crisscrossed and the 50,000 unit went out as a 5,000 unit, a over the counter version, uh, to health food stores. And it was hundreds of people that actually took the 50,000 units a day before they caught them and track them down and had issued a recall how to track these people down. And they put them in a study and they followed them. They followed them for a little over a year and a half. And what they found in that year and a half is they did have some kidney stones. But the crazy thing was they had no fatal cardiac arrhythmias. They have no cardiac arrhythmias at all. They only have kidney stones and gallstones because vitamin D3 actually increases the output of calcium from the bone. And um, so when it does that, if you’re prone to forming kidney stones, you can form kidney stones cause it forces the kidneys to work harder to get rid of it.


14:40          Similar process with the gallbladder but not the same. It’s beside the point. So the cool thing is vitamin D3 can lower magnesium a little, but that’s another talk for another day. Most people are too low in magnesium anyway, they just need to supplement with some magnesium and the whole kidney stone thing occurs because of elevated calcium as I just explained. But the good news is we just need to coerce the calcium to stay in the bone where it belongs, which is quite frankly a simple fix called vitamin K two. Now again, that’s a whole nother conversation for another day because most of the medical people that are aren’t privy or aren’t aware of the difference between vitamin K one and vitaminK two they freak out. They think, oh, we’re going to cost the person to have blood clots. Well, that’s more of a vitamin K one issue, but when it comes to calcium, vitaminK two is king.


15:31          Vitamin K two will force that calcium or coerce that calcium to stay in the bone where it belongs and actually solidify the bone, making it stronger. So women out there that are taking any kind of Osteo support type of formula in it and it has the vitamin D which is great, but it doesn’t have vitamin K two horrible, horrible, horrible. These have vitaminK two in it. Again, you need to consult or your primary care provider, your medical provider and run that bomb. Uh, chances are you’re going to get to know probably what I would recommend talking to a functional medicine person. Anyway, back to Sweden in the U S it’s a leap for me to assume that vitamin D3 is the link between these two countries. Differences when it comes to health outcomes, and maybe it is, maybe it’s not among industrialized nations. However, those that allow for higher vitamin D3 levels say 75 and above that health outcomes for those countries appear to be better than those countries where lower vitamin D3 levels are tolerated.


16:28          The lesson here I think is healthier. Vitamin D3 levels mean healthier people. So let’s dive into brain fog. Now. This is going to be rapid fire, so put on your seatbelts, a systematic review and Meta-analysis. Again Meta-analysis, looking at all the data of the literature was completed and at about 2017 it looked at 26 observational studies and three interventional studies. 20 observational studies are just simply, we’re looking to see if there’s a connection between a and B. An interventional study could have been any number of things. It could have been a double-blinded placebo-controlled study where nobody knew what anybody was getting until after the study was complete. It could have been an individual study where we know we’re given this person vitamin D we’re measuring a pre-measurement and a post-measurement, a testing just to see what the outcome is.


17:17          So 26 observational studies, three interventional studies over 19,000 participants, all total and the studies. And here’s what they found. Low Vitamin D3 status was associated with cognitive decline and for cognitive performance among participants. Without dementia it’s even bigger. So again, low vitamin D3 status was associated with cognitive decline and poor cognitive performance in people without dementia. Similarly and too, and another thousand 17 study researchers evaluated the role of vitamin D3 status in cognition. That’s memory and high level thinking. Among 369 people, they found that those who were vitamin D deficient experienced a faster rate of cognitive decline and vitamin D3 deficiency was associated with a nearly three fold increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease later on down the road. Another study published in 2015 found that vitamin D deficiency was associated with future risk of memory decline independent of any other factor, and if you think you can cycle on and off of your vitamin D based on the seasons, you may be setting yourself up for worsening brain fog because a study published in the Canadian Journal of neurological sciences found that both vitamin D insufficiency and seasonal decline of vitamin D levels or correlated with lower cognitive performance.


18:52          Now if you need more info ammunition, I’ve got it. 2015 study suggested that if your vitamin D3 levels are low, you’ll likely have a threefold faster decline in memory and overall brain function compared to those who have healthy vitamin D3 levels. Now hope you’re able to see that vitamin D3 really does help with brain function and memory issues. It’s one of the many factors that can come into play when approaching brain fog management. The good news is vitamin D3 has documented benefits with decreasing the risk of diseases that attack the brain such as vascular disease. As we mentioned earlier, it has a potent antioxidant effects, something your brain needs. A lot of it helps regulate the immune system, which may help the brain keep the brain healthier and it enhances nerve conduction or nerve signaling throughout the body and the brain. And lastly, research shows that it helps with detoxification.


19:47          Low levels of vitamin D have clearly been associated with brain fog type issues like memory decline and increased risk for dementia. Oh, and almost forgot when I said that vitamin D helps with the toxification and the body. One of the primary things that helps the brain detoxify is a product called amyloid. Amyloid is a toxic protein that’s associated with or linked to Alzheimer’s. In fact, the plaques that form in the brain in the, what they call it, neurofibrillary tangles are amyloid plaques. Now, I don’t know about you, but I don’t want that amyloid crap floating around inside my brain and as a busy health professional and business owner, I can’t afford to be dealing with brain fog. Now. I’ll leave you with this. When I first started practicing functional medicine, I was super hesitant to add more than one or two things. After my first visit with a client, I was just a gunshot.


20:42          I would always start with vitamin D, vitamin D3 and D, a g, a sustained release. First I would let them have it as they walked out the door. Then in one week I would have them staggering on another treatment and then another week I’d have them stagger on another treatment until we got all of them added. Usually it was only two more things and that’s beside the point. I was staggering them in. I was separating them out and giving them some distance there until clinically I got my head wrapped around how my patients were going to be responding. It got to be comical because I began to get phone calls from clients around the end of week one saying things like, is it possible that I’m feeling better already just with the Vitamin D3 and d ATA? And the answer is, of course it is. Yes. When I would clarify what kind of improvement they were noticing, they would always say things like, I’m just more clearheaded or it seems like the fog has lifted.


21:38          I later came to appreciate that vitamin D3 and DTA both have the effect independent of each other. You discover these things when people run out of one and not the other and start noticing your brain fog type issues. Again, I’ve also come to appreciate the fact that they have a synergistic effect, meaning that they both have this synergy that really, really, really improves brain fog. So lots of times one person runs out of a vitamin D but they still enter the ETA. The brain fog gets worse, but it’s not as bad as it was at baseline. If they run out of both of them, it goes down to where it was at baseline. So that brings up the question, you know, where do I get the a good form of vitamin D? So if you’re looking for an excellent source of highly absorbable vitamin D3 with vitamin K two already in it to keep the calcium in the bones, as I mentioned previously, go to Optimal.CEO/VitaminD. Now that’s all lower case.


22:40          So again, I’ll say it, go to where you’ll find one of the most unique and proprietary formulations of vitamin D on the market today or you’ll find one of the most unique and proprietary formulations of vitamin D on the market. That brings us to an end today, but before we go here at the optimal CEO, I craft custom tailored wellness plans for men, high achieving men like CEOs, entrepreneurs and influencers, wellness plans, custom-designed, correct hidden imbalances and optimize their peak flow state so they can double their productivity in half the time it takes with conventional approaches. If you’re struggling with brain fog or just plain old feel bad and can’t seem to find the right solution to fix it, my inbox is always open. I’d love to hear from you so we can explore some possible solutions to get you back on track.


23:34          You can message me anytime on Instagram or Facebook at the optimal CEO. I’d like to share something very special with my guys who are listening out there. On Saturday, November the ninth I’ll be hosting a one day mastermind in Nashville, Tennessee for mentally in this mastermind event, I’ll be revealing how the current medical system is broken and left. You without answers all because you’ve been reduced to a laboratory number on a piece of paper and possibly even been told it’s all in your head. I’ll be sharing with you how you can finally get answers through my proprietary 360-degree incubator process and I’ll also be revealing how to get rid of that nagging voice inside your head that says things like, I’ve been everywhere and tried everything. There’s no hope or maybe it’s saying, I’ll have to set my expectations too high and just need to learn to live with it.


24:27          Or maybe that voice is saying, you know, my doctor is right. This is just the new normal for my age. I’ll be sharing with you the exact pathway it takes to finally get the answers you deserve and renew your hope so you can reach your health goals. Feel better, have more energy, get rid of brain fog, lose that weight, and keep it off and sleep like a baby again. Lastly, I’ll also be sharing with you, while your worst enemy is Tom, you don’t have time to be away from the office sitting in a German festive waiting room for an hour or more. You don’t have time to be seen by a medical provider for only five minutes. You don’t have time to be told. Everything is normal when you know it’s not and you don’t have time to be patronized and led to believe it’s all in your head and you certainly don’t have time to be given a prescription for an antidepressant or some other unwanted medication.


25:16          You simply don’t have time to waste. I’ll be sharing with you my proven process for getting answers and results as quickly as possible, saving you valuable time, ultimately doubling your productivity in half the time it takes with conventional approaches. As a bonus, and I’m super excited about this, I literally just finalize the details. I’ll have a special guest speaker there who was responsible for orchestrating the executive coaching programs for arguably one of the most influential business mindset gurus on the world. A Guru who commands upwards of $100,000 to do a keynote for large corporations. My secret guest speaker is truly the magic behind the man and now speaks all over the world, sharing his knowledge and insight with high achievers regarding operating their businesses and life from a place of integrity and congruence with their purpose. I’ve sat under this man’s teaching for over two years now, and I’ve had the distinct pleasure of being coached by him.


26:14          We’ve become close friends in the process and I’ve gone through his proprietary process, which literally doubled my business within 90 days. This man’s wisdom is truly a gift from God and he radically changes lives and businesses every day. I know it certainly changed mine now. People have paid as much as $36,000 to sit under this man’s to tillage and you’ll get access to his amazing teaching during this one day event as an added bonus if you’re interested in coming to this one day, mastermind is once in a lifetime opportunity because I don’t know if I’m going to be able to get this guy there. Again, you can message me on Instagram or Facebook @TheOptimalCEO and I’ll give you more details. By the way, there is an early bird pricing special in the month of August, so reach out quickly for more details. I’d like to thank you for joining me today. Please tune in next time where I’ll be sharing the number-two reason why you’re struggling with brain fog. Until next time, this is Dr. Brian Brown, The Optimal CEO signing off and I hope you have an optimal day.


27:18          Here at The Optimal CEO Podcast, we help CEO entrepreneurs who love taking ownership of their wellness journey, because they know it’s their most prized investment, and when their state of wellness is at its peak, their income soars. We want to help relieve CEO entrepreneurs from the pressure of unnecessary health exposure, so they can be highly focused on growing their business, and physically optimize for the journey, so they can enjoy getting there.


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