The Ayahuasca Diet
It is essential to prepare yourself before working with Ayahuasca. Besides mental and spiritual preparation for the ceremonies, it is necessary to show your dedication and involvement by doing a diet. This diet is not the same as the word diet usually means and the goal is not to lose weight.
For the Shipibo shamans, a diet is common tradition and it is said to improve the healing energy of Ayahuasca as well as bring you to deeper spiritual levels in ceremonies.
The medicine tends to start with a physical cleaning, the more physically clean you arrive at the medicine circles, the easier the medicine can bring you to deeper levels to work on. Vomiting, also called “the purge”, can be influenced by what you consumed in the period before arrival. Normally it’s energy you no longer need to carry with you which is released by the medicine and the work of the shaman. Vomiting is not always the way to release these energies, it can also come out in the form of yawning, burping, diarrhea or shivering/feeling cold.
But when you consumed things before arrival that are not in agreement with the diet, it can definitely increase the chances of vomiting. In that case, it is a physical cleaning that takes place. The advice is to start a few weeks before arrival with the diet, but minimal 3 to 4 days in advance. After you come home it’s best to continue the diet for about a week, you will notice it improves your openness, also your results and positive effects of the work in the medicine circles will last longer.
What comes with the diet as well is no over-indulging in eating. Sometimes when we cannot eat everything we are used to, we tend to overeat on the things which we can eat.
During the groups we serve a healthy breakfast and a wholesome warm lunch, but no dinner. It feels a lot better at night in the medicine circles when you haven’t stuffed yourself with lunch.
Try and take it easier in the days leading to arrival, avoid parties, a hectic schedule and minimize use of social media, take time for yourself instead. The same applies for after you come home.
The following items are NOT part of the Ayahuasca diet:
- sugar and sweeteners
- soft drinks and energy drinks
- dairy products. Soy milk, almond milk, coconut milk and similar products are fine.
- salt, pepper, hot spices and chilis
- red meat. (avoid pork 2 weeks before and after) Fish and chicken can be eaten.
- fats. Healthy fats as in avocados, salmon and nuts are no problem
- salad oil, sunflower oil. use coconut oil or olive oil (sparingly)
- alcohol (no alcohol-free beer either), 1 weeks before and after is sufficient with 2-3 glasses per week. With higher alcohol consumption, the period of stopping increases.
- drugs. 2-4 weeks, depending on which drugs and with which frequency they are taken. Marihuana/hasj are also considered drugs.
- ice cream, ice cubes or ice cold drinks
- bruised or overripe fruit, dried fruit and/or raisins
The diet does not only have food restrictions, but also:
- no sex, including masturbation
- during the groups no perfumed or synthetic soap, perfumed bodylotion or other perfumed toiletries, insect repellent lotions with DEET.
- preferably no medication, supplements or vitamins, especially antibiotics, antidepressants, even St. John’s wort (please let us know with your reservation if you use medication and what)
- no pregnancy
- menstruation: inform us if you are menstruating (access to the ceremonies is possible, but during the first 2 days of menstruation drinking Ayahuasca, the liberation of energy is really strong and the shaman has to know in order to work with it)
- no high blood pressure, heart conditions or diabetes. Please always inform us about your physical or mental ailments with your application.
Following the diet does not only show your good intentions to work with Ayahuasca and prepares your mind, body and soul for ceremonies. Refraining yourself from pleasure that comes from outside yourself, like food, sex, drugs, alcohol and even social media makes you completely dependent on yourself which starts the processes that will continue in ceremonies. It is all about focusing on yourself and finding all the answers within yourself, without getting or seeking any distractions from the outside.