Have you ever suffered from unexplained fatigue? Were you ever told that you have adrenal exhaustion or chronic fatigue syndrome? Perhaps you tried countless nutritional supplements with no effect. Perhaps you tried to optimize your hormones with bioidentical hormone prescriptions, or used intense detoxification protocols such as heavy metal chelation but still feel exhausted the moment you get out of bed in the morning.

Have you been depressed, lacked motivation, and found it difficult to initiate and organize your daily activities and did not accomplish as much as you would like? Did you try antidepressants but did not see any improvements in your mood? 

Have you been suffering from poor digestion and constipation? Perhaps you are using digestive enzymes but still have a sluggish bowel.

Many people think these are the normal signs of aging. In reality, fatigue, depression, lack of motivation, and gastrointestinal problems can be the result of brain degeneration, but they are rarely treated as such. Chronic fatigue syndrome is often brain-based. As the brain degenerates, brain cells develop poor endurance for ordinary tasks. In essence, they begin to fatigue, and when the brain fatigues, your entire body fatigues. At that time, even trivial light or sound stimulation to the brain triggers exhaustion.

From a neurological standpoint, depression and lack of motivation are simply the result of decreased activity of the frontal lobe, the area at the front of the brain that gives us motivation and a sense of well-being. Many different things can cause this decreased activity, including imbalances in brain chemicals or hormones.

For example, reading, driving or being in a loud, noisy restaurant can cause you to feel fatigued. Watching an action movie with lots of quick flashes of light and constant screen changes, or the actual drama of the movie can make you feel tired. All of these various inputs to your brain can overwhelm your degenerated and exhausted brain cells (neurons), so that they fatigue quickly. Consequently, the brain’s output to the rest of the body is compromised, and the body fatigues as well.

As people get older, their brain degenerates and they start reverting to the fight or flight state (aka sympathetic dominance) of a newborn. They develop constipation, an inability to digest food or produce digestive enzymes, an elevated heart rate and abnormal respiratory rate, change in pupillary response, urination and loss of sexual arousal, due to poor brain function. This sympathetic response can also restrict blood flow to the extremities causing cold hands and feet, and chronic fungal growths on their nails. They also struggle with the lose of sense of smell and taste because they no longer produce enough mucus in their nasal passages, which in turn causes the brain’s olfactory pathways to decline.  

Most people think that forgetting things is a normal part of getting older, as is dozing off every time they read, or no longer finding joy in the things or relationships that used to delight them. However, it is not age but brain deterioration. Most people will have their brain deteriorate more every year thinking that it is part of normal aging, until they become impaired enough to be diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. At that point, there are virtually no treatment options that will make any difference.

Just as we should make conscious efforts to eat right and exercise to lower the risk of cardiovascular disease, so we should make conscious efforts to protect our brain health. We all have some degree of brain degeneration, but the symptoms can become very scary if it advances unchecked. What is worse, brain degeneration prevents us from being able to recognize when it is happening, or to get motivated enough to do something about it.

In Part 2, we will show how to improve your brain function and how to prevent cognitive decline.