Every night, humans around the world spend up to two hours dreaming, even if they don’t always remember it. If remembering and interpreting your dreams is something you care about, researchers from the University of Adelaide’s School of Psychology in Australia may have discovered a solution, according to research published in the journal Perceptual and Motor Skills.
In the past, people taking B6 supplements have remarked on how vivid their dreams were. So Australian researchers recruited 100 people for a sleep study. The volunteers were randomly split into three groups, with each getting a different supplement: vitamin B6, vitamin B complex, or a placebo. The researchers asked everyone to keep a log of their dreams and, after five days, turn over the journals for analysis. Sure enough, the group taking vitamin B6 had better dream recall. Here are 13 more bizarre facts about your dreams.
One of the study’s authors Dr. Denholm Aspy noted that more research was needed to fully understand the vitamin’s impact on dreaming, but researchers are excited by the potential of the findings. “The average person spends around six years of their lives dreaming,” he said in a press release. “If we are able to become lucid and control our dreams, we can then use our dreaming time more productively. Lucid dreaming, where you know that you are dreaming while the dream is still happening, has many potential benefits. For example, it may be possible to use lucid dreaming for overcoming nightmares, treating phobias, creative problem solving, refining motor skills and even helping with rehabilitation from physical trauma.”
One note on B6: It’s toxic at higher doses, so consult with your doctor before trying this at home. Dr. Aspy hopes to figure out whether getting more B6 from your diet—it’s found in fish, beef, and starchy veggies like potatoes—would deliver similar benefits. In the meantime, you can better interpret the dreams you do remember with these 21 surprising things your dreams reveal about you.