Does eating cheese give you nightmares? How about eating certain types of cheese just before bedtime? I was just wondering since I just ate a whole lot of cheese and its just gone midnight...
Rebecca says: Great question! I have often wondered about this rumor myself... To find out, The British Cheese Board (oh dear) carried out a scientific investigation in 2005 in which participants were asked to eat a small 3 ounce piece of cheese before bedtime. They kept a record of their dreams and nightmares to detect any patterns and see if they really could induce cheese dreams.
Interestingly, 75% of volunteers said they slept pretty well every night and most of those could remember and report their dreams (can't remember your dreams?). This led the Cheese Board to conclude that the essential amino acid in milk - called tryptophan - was having its effect on the cheese-eaters by normalizing their sleep patterns and reducing stress levels.
Now comes the really strange part... In an interview with National Public Radio, Nigel White, the Secretary of The British Cheese Board, explained that people eating Blue Stilton cheese before bedtime reported very vivid dreams - not necessarily nightmares, but certainly wacky in their content.
He also said that the common Cheddar cheese produced more dreams about celebrities, while Cheshire cheese produced a nice, dreamless sleep. Red Leicester led to nostalgic dreams featuring childhood content, while Lancashire produced dreams of work - definitely a nightmare for some!
So, does eating cheese give you nightmares? According to The British Cheese Board, the answer is no. But it does appear to increase dream intensity, which helps you to remember more dreams, and produces more vivid and emotionally charged dreams, depending on the type of cheese you eat...
If we're completely honest, lucid dreaming isn't really known for being the most social of interests. In fact, often it's a lone pursuit - just you, your dream journal and the landscape of your mind. But this technique called PAL (or Partner Assisted Lucidity) breaks down that wall and turns lucid dream exploration into a social event.
Members of our lucid dream forum have been asking how to create dream characters in lucid dreams. The most common problem is having characters who look nothing like they should. Or they seem disinterested in your company. Or they fail to show up on command altogether. So, how to combat this? It's a matter of finding creative solutions that bypass logical expectations.
To lucid dream, I recommend being able to remember at least one vivid dream per night. That will boost your self awareness in dreams (making lucidity more likely) and also means you can actually remember your lucid dreams. Which is nice. Here are four detailed tips on how to remember your dreams more frequently. And if you don't think you dream at all - trust me, you almost certainly do. It takes an extraordinarily rare sleep disorder to deprive someone of dream sleep.
It is estimated that these wise and wily Indians have been using mugwort in their healing and ritual practices for 13,000 years, where it is known as the ‘dream sage’. They use the herb to promote good dreams, which they consider an essential aspect of normal human functioning! But that’s not all...
Silene Capensis has been used for millennia by the Xhosa shaman of the river valleys in the eastern cape of South Africa, where it is known as Undela Ziimhlophe or 'white paths'. It's fragrant white flowers open only at night, when they emit a fragrant and almost hypnotising aroma. Also known as African Dream Herb or Ubulawu, Silene Capensis induces spectacularly vivid dreams - yet has never entered the mainstream and remains a fringe taste within western culture.
Experts agree that everyone is capable of having lucid dreams. Dreaming itself is a normal function of the mind. We all dream every night, even if we don't remember. And we all achieve conscious awareness while awake every single day. So what does it mean to combine these states? Why, the amazing ability to have conscious - or lucid - dreams. Sounds simple, doesn't it? So why do I keep hearing from people who say they can't achieve their first lucid dream?