I just uploaded my latest article that explores lucid dreaming supplements. Dream herbs and supplements are getting a lot of press these days, especially from the “life-hack” crowd.
My take is that a lucid dreaming pill is not going to be of much help for beginner lucid dreamers unless they are also engaging in mind-development practices as well.
In fact, these supplements can have some nasty side-effects for the unprepared, including lucid nightmares. There’s nothing like a good, old-fashioned nightmare to take the fun out of your mind-hacking explorations.
So, in the spirit of education and cognitive liberty, here is my guide to lucid dreaming supplements, the first part of a longer series of developing lucid dreaming naturally.
And thanks to Boing-boing for the image.
I’ve never had any success with Calea, but it does win the award for the most foul substance I’ve ever ingested (tea form) 🙂
yup, calea’s acrid profile (with a hint of vile) probably adds to its mystique. This tastes bad – it must be working!
I enjoyed reading this. Curious to see the next installment of supplements to the supplements!!!
Supplements really do work!! I’ve been practicing lucid dreaming on and off since my Psychology 101 class a few years ago. Since then I’ve had about 4 or 5 lucid dreams, but nothing compared to last night. I took Galanthamine (8mg) and Choline Bitartrate (500mg) last night using the WBTB (Wake back to bed) technique. Basically, I woke up about 4 hours after I went to sleep, then took the meds and stayed up for 15 minutes or so thinking about nothing but remembering my dreams and dream signs. What happened next was incredible, and a first time for me.
Instead of “waking up” in my dream using dream signs like my previous LD’s, I went into my dream through the hypnagogic stage effortlessly. In other words, I went from sitting in bed thinking solely about LD, to falling straight through my bed and into a VIVID lucid dream. It also lasted MUCH longer than any of my previous LD’s.
I can’t say enough how much more vivid my dream was with supplements than without. One interesting detail is that when I started losing awareness within my dream, I asked the person I was talking to- to show me their hand (dream sign). When I saw that they had about 12 fingers, I was right back in it!
Ryan Hurd says
David, thanks for your success story with supplements, especially the details of amounts and when you took them. I have also found that supplements specifically increase my chance of WILDs (wake-initiated lucid dreams). brain food good!
Where do you get Galanthamine and Choline?
Ryan Hurd says
hi Michael – the company I used to get galanthamine from is out of business.
I’m starting late in life (in my sixties) to attain lucid dreaming, following directions in one of LaBerge’s books as best I can. I have recently had a few seconds of being aware I was dreaming, but was not able to hold on to the state. Though I take the view that a meditative practice (for me anyway) is essential for approaching lucid dreaming, I decided for the first time to try a little chemical assistance, and last night took 8mg of galantamine purchased from Advanced Dream Nutrition after about 4 or 5 hours of sleep. It was with some wariness, having read comments on this site, that I did this. However, being an adventurous sort (I was a serious rock climber for many years) I decided to take the plunge. I did not lucid dream. However, the result was worthwhile, interesting, and somewhat comical. Around 4am I woke up from a much longer dream–not scary in any way–than I usually have (or remember having) and recalled a good deal of it. This in itself seems very positive. The comedy was that for part of the dream I was telling my dream friends that I had taken galantamine to induce lucid dreaming, but was doubtful about its efficacy! [What! Do I need the Archangel Michael to appear before me with a flaming sword telling me I’m dreaming?! Duh!] In summary I think I’ll continue down this path for a while at least. Probably will add choline bitartrate into the mix and see what happens. Onward!
Lucid dreaming for may years, but recently turned to supplements. In a sentence, they worked every single time! 8mg Gal, 500 choline and MC, see Thomas Yuschack, Advanced Lucid dreaming. Only drawback? Tiredness the following day.
Ryan Hurd says
nice! I have had good experiences as well with that pairing.
Ps: MC is Mucuna Pruriens – natural source of L-Dopa, precursor to dopamine. I am looking forward to adding GPC to the mix – Glycerophosphocholine – as this has a later peak time to choline salts and will theoretically ‘kick-in’ when the others run out.I will also try piracetam to alleviate de-sensitization, and hopefully tiredness. This morning I took Galantamine, Choline and MP, result: entered into the dream state from waking, fully lucid – four hours of lucid dreaming! Every time I awoke I remained still and re-entered the lucid dreamscape, quite incredible, and with no suggestion to lucid dream, the experience seems to have been purely predicated on the ingestion of supplements.
Richard B says
I have to admit that I sometimes think there are real physiological differences between people who seem to lucid dream easily, and those who don’t. (Like me.) I took 8mg of galantamine last night, two days after the last try, and did not even have a dream that I remember. Zip. Nada. Just tired in the morning, and a mild lingering headache. The Choline Bitartrate I ordered should be arriving shortly and I’ll make another attempt, probably in a week. Actually I’ve got GPC coming also. If all that doesn’t make it I may try the REM Dreamer device. As a footnote I might add that I’m having an internal debate as to whether I am in a spiritual sense “grasping” at lucid dreaming, and hence it is not happening (sort of a Catholic guilt scenario) or if, as stated, my physiology is somehow out of whack for the endeavor.
Richard D says
Hi Richard B, thought I would add the ‘D’ here as there seem to be a lot of Richards!
I don’t think Galantamine works on its own, it is the combination with choline salts which is important, and GPC, note all of these will become ineffectual after one session, always wait ‘at least’ four days before you try again, or nutralise with piracetam, it is a fine nuro-chemical science, quantities, combinations and timing are very important.
Richard B says
Thanks for the advice, Richard D. The choline bitartrate arrived today, and I’m planning on taking it with the galantamine Friday evening.
Ryan Hurd says
great discussion guys. I have tried MC but noted no effects over the month of experimentation. thanks Richard D for sharing your additional experience — particularly about the importance of timing. oneironauts are really on the front lines of research here on the effect of these subbstances on consciousness.
@Catholic guilt: there is an effect that noted lucid dream researcher Fariba Bogzaran has told me about in which heavy intention can backfire if the intention becomes pressure — in other words, if we start blaming ourselves for not going lucid. So keep it playful and remember we’ll have another night to dream tomorrow.
Richard D says
Richard B, I note you say ‘Friday evening’ and in your previous post you say ‘last night’. The most efficacious time for these supplements to be taken is in fact in the early morning, after four or five hours of sleep, basically combine with the WBTB technique. Personal recommendation:
1 no alcohol, caffeine or other stimulants on the night preceding the experiment.
2 Wake up early on the preceding morning so that you are tired at about ten or eleven
3 sleep for four to five hours, wake, take 500 mg Choline Bitartrate combined with 8mg Galantamine (GPC and Mucuna Pruriens may also be added, but not absolutely necessary)
4 stay up for 30-45 minutes, read about lucid dreaming, but not in very bright light
5 go back to bed, I personally find right side ten minutes, back five, left five, then settle on right side
6 just relax and observe arising imagery, the trick is to not take too much notice, just let things appear and disappear, it is important to lie still, quieten the inner voice and relax; soon either the imagery will solidify into a dream which you can enter or you will appear to leave your body and enter the facsimile environment of your bedroom. At this point I usually leave the apartment and a dream commences.
I firmly believe that you are entering a dream in both cases and that consciousness is not actually leaving the body, it is just a matter of the brain modelling your last known environment, the one you know you went to sleep in, in the second case. However, it really does ‘feel’ as if you are leaving your body, sitting up out of it, or rolling out, but what is in fact happening is a new association of the ‘I’ of self-consciousness with the ‘dream body’ self-image as opposed to the physical body self-image. I wish you a good adventure tomorrow!
For the person who asked where to get the supplements discussed in the comments here, I found them on Amazon.
Nature’s Way Choline Bitartrate (500mg) 100 tabs
$9.26 + $0.00shipping
Galantamind (Galantamine), 90 Capsules
$44.95 + $5.95 shipping
If it is cheaper somewhere else, please post!
Ryan Hurd says
thanks Eric. yeah, I should have updated that. I don’t know a better source than Amazon altho most local natural food stores carry nootropics like choline and melatonin these days.