If you’re having trouble remembering your dreams, vitamin B6 supplements may be the way to go. A recent study revealed that taking vitamin B6 right before going to sleep can help people recall their dreams, ScienceDaily reports.
The paper, published in Perceptual and Motor Skills, explored the effects of high-dose vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) supplements on people’s ability to recall their dreams vividly and in detail.
According to research author Dr. Denholm Aspy, from the University of Adelaide in Australia, this is the first study to investigate how vitamin B impacts the dreaming process on a large and diverse group of participants.
In the experiment, 100 people were asked to take tablets before bed for a period of five consecutive days. The tablets contained either 240 mg of vitamin B6, a placebo or a vitamin B complex comprising a range of B vitamins.
The results showed that vitamin B6 helped study participants remember significantly more dreams and 64 more details compared to the other tablets. Vitamin B6 improved the capacity to recall dreams even in participants who had struggled with it in the past.
“Vitamin B6 did not affect the vividness, bizarreness or color of their dreams, and did not affect other aspects of their sleep patterns,” Aspy specified in a news release issued by the university.
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The study participants reported having “clearer and clearer” dreams, which were “easier to remember.” They also stated that the memories of their dreams didn’t become fragmented as the day passed and that the dreams seemed “more real” after taking the vitamin B6 tablets.
The explanation could be attributed to the role that vitamin B6 plays in converting tryptophan to serotonin, Aspy pointed out.
The researcher told IFLScience that this process initially induces a deep, dreamless sleep, followed by a “rebound” period which makes people “dream intensively in the last few hours” of their sleep, when they’re most likely to remember their dreams.
Aspy is hoping that these results could boost lucid dreaming and help people harness its many benefits.
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“The average person spends around six years of their lives dreaming. If we are able to become lucid and control our dreams, we can then use our dreaming time more productively,” Aspy explains.
As he points out, lucid dreaming could be used for a wide range of therapeutic applications, from overcoming nightmares to treating phobias to dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder. Lucid dreaming could also be beneficial to creative problem solving and refining motor skills, he adds.
Commenting on the results of his study, Aspy mentioned that vitamin B6 supplements may prove very useful in helping people have lucid dreams.
“In order to have lucid dreams it is very important to first be able to recall dreams on a regular basis.”
MIT researchers have been working on a related project and have developed the dream-control Dormio device, the Inquisitr reported earlier this week.