Is Huperzine-A a Lucid Dream Supplement?
At one time I thought a really clever idea would be to combine Galantamine and Huperzine-A and name the product Galantazine. Sounds catchy, right? Many people are already onto Galantamine as an effective lucid dream inducing supplement. And Huperzine-A is in all sorts of nootropic stocks, including AlphaBrain. Even Tim Ferris's original money-maker (long since sold the company) called BrainQuicken (also marketed as BodyQuick) included Huperzine. It is typical for the marketers of Huperzine-containing products to claim that their blends may, as a nice side-effect, give you some lucid dreams. I wanted to believe this, because Galantamine can be a rough ride, and Huperzine is more subtle. Less likely to lead to headaches, regardless of co-administering of a choline source. I was going to be the first person to combine these two nootropics into a super-formula. Then trouble in paradise.
I began experimenting with the combination of Galantamine and Huperzine, and to my dismay no lucid dreams. Actually, any time I took Huperzine I had trouble remembering any dreams at all. And I'm a fairly vivid dreamer, normally. What gives? Why do the guys at Onnit, and Tim Ferris, claim the lucid dreaming connection with Huperzine, when it seems to even block the dream powers of Galantamine? While pondering this I discovered that Thomas Yuschak reported the same thing in an article he wrote titled Substances that Facilitate Lucid Dreaming – A Case Study. This article is a follow up to Yuschak's book Advanced Lucid Dreaming: The Power of Supplements. In the first book Yuschak hypothesized that Huperzine should work well for lucid dream induction, because it – like Galantamine – is an Acetylcholine-Esterase-Inhibitor. Up to this point Yushak had not actually tried Huperzine, and when he later did, he found out as I did: Alas, the actions of these two chemicals turn out to be different. But again, why the lucid dream claim from these other companies and performance experts?
What I think is happening here is that products which contain Huperzine-A actually inhibit the brain chemistry behind REM-Sleep (and lucid dreaming) and if taken early enough before sleep could lead to a REM-rebound affect. However, relying on REM-rebound alone is a tricky path to lucid dream induction. And most people are going to be tempted to take their lucid dream supplements in combination with the Wake-Back-To-Bed method. What have I concluded? Well, Huperzine has its place in nootropic stacks, but there are more direct routes to using supplements for lucid dream purposes.