Monday, July 16, 2012

Cheese Dreamin; Or, I Get All Scientific & Stuff


Recently brought to my attention was this study, from the British Cheese Board in 2005.

I like me a good cheese, and a very worthy cause such as testing out this study is certainly a reason to take 20 g of cheese before bed (and call your local fromagerist in the morning).

I might not be the best candidate for this study (or, conversely, a GREAT one). I don't usually remember my dreams, and most of the ones I can remember are rather convoluted and/or extremely banal (have you ever dreamed of walking to the mail box and posting a letter?)

Regardless, I'm moving ahead with this cheese/dream testing, and I'll be presenting my Very Scientific results over the next few days.1

First up: a delicious Red Leicester

This is what the study has to say:
Red Leicester proved to be brilliant for helping participants to get a good night’s sleep – one quarter slept well every single night of the study, and 83% of all nights under the influence of Red Leicester were good sleep experiences. As for dreams, Red Leicester is the cheese to choose if you are feeling nostalgic about your past – over 60% of participants eating this cheese revisited their schooldays, or long-lost childhood friends, or previous family homes and hometowns.

Cheese I ate: Cloth bound Red Leicester Aged English cheese
My Score: NO CHEESE. Didn't work for me.
I dreamed of my sister's wedding (though not a real replication of events, she did indeed get married last September), along with an assortment of other random things. The main of which was an overwhelming sense of discomfort and unease, being in some unfamiliar surroundings and with an ever-present sensation that I was just waiting, waiting, waiting for something.
See what I mean? I have stupid dreams.

Next up: Stilton.
1While this is obviously a bit of fun, I thought I'd divulge some of the constraints and concessions I've made in my attempt to replicate this survey.
First, not all the cheeses are British. I'm sure if I looked hard enough I'd be able to find imported versions of all the samples, but for something intended to be a bit of fun, my budget was unsurprisingly pretty low.
Second, I've decided I'll be eating this cheese within a couple hours before bed. Not sure if the magical powers will wear off with that span of time, but food
right before bed squicks me out.
Third, I kept the cheese portion to 25 grams.


Meredith MC said...

This is hilarious. I have awesomely wild dreams sometimes but I never thought to link them to what I'd just eaten. If it works for you, I might just have to try it for fun. Thanks for your willingness to share with us.btw- how much is 25 grams, like a slice? I can't imagine eating much more than that very close to bed time.

Teresa said...

Yes! 25 grams is a small amount. Think: it's half of a 50 gram ball of yarn!

mel said...

I love this! Am totally going to do it with my favourite cheese (NB - If you get a chance to try La Riopelle from Quebec, DO IT! From reading the whole "study" I think you'll like it). I always have completely weird and extremely vivid dreams (in colour) but this will be fun. I'll report back :-)