After reading about Andrew’s success and Barry’s experience with galantamine for lucid dreaming, I decided to conduct my own experiment over a period of 196 days. During 82 of those days, I successfully induced lucid dreams and recorded my findings. My goal was to determine if the supplement could increase the frequency of my lucid dreams. During this time, I stopped my usual reality checks and instead focused on maintaining casual all-day awareness. Additionally, I would read text, look away, and then re-read it when I could remember to do so, using this as a trigger to return me to a state of awareness. My intention during this time was to allow galantamine to be the primary influence on my lucid dreaming.
The exact mechanism by which galantamine promotes lucid dreaming is not fully understood, but some studies suggest that it may increase the activity of acetylcholine in the brain during REM sleep, which is the stage where dreaming occurs. Two known benefits from this are the ability to recall daytime memories more easily (reality checks) and the promotion of more vivid and memorable dreams.
During my experiment, I confirmed that taking galantamine increased the vividness and length of my dreams. One thing I noticed, and attributed to this, was that it would keep me up longer than normal before I fell asleep. This may have caused me to go into a deeper stage of NREM sleep, resulting in longer and more stable REM cycles. The increased vividness and length of my dreams gave me more time to become aware I was dreaming.
An analogy that I believe is fitting is throwing a baseball or shooting a basketball. The more chances you have to throw or shoot (longer dreams), the more chances you have to throw a strike or score (become lucid).
Additionally, I believe there may be a powerful indirect placebo effect at play when taking galantamine for lucid dreaming. The belief that the supplement can help increase lucidity, coupled with the noticeable changes in REM sleep, may subconsciously reinforce the idea that the supplement is working.
However, I want to emphasize that achieving lucidity takes dedication and commitment regardless of any medication or supplement used. In my opinion, keeping a dream journal is essential and provides the foundation for lucid dreaming that you build upon.
Lastly, I want to note that I have been prescribed galantamine by a doctor. It’s important to consult with a healthcare professional before using galantamine, as it may have interactions with other medications.
Overall, it was a fun experiment, and my next one will involve not using galantamine so that I can gain a better understanding of its effect on my dreams.