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Health information

Diet and health information

There has been a reasonable amount of research on Ayahuasca and the effects it has on body and mind. Ayahuasca is not a harmful substance, but it is important to know what you’re getting yourself into. You have to first read about Ayahuasca, follow a diet and experience it under professional guidance. This way you minimalize all the risks there are.

It is very important  to watch what you eat before the ritual. On the internet there are differing stories about what you should and shouldn’t eat. If you have any doubts, please contact us or your doctor for some personal advice. The substance DMT is not dangerous in any way, but the MAO inhibiters can be dangerous in combination with other substances. The MAO inhibiters especially react badly with tyramine rich nutrition.

Read the following carefully before you participate in an Ayahuasca ceremony.

Nutrition
No coffee, alcohol, smoking or drugs, till three days before, and three days after the weekend. To save body energy: sexual abstinence. Eat three days prior to the weekend lightly. No meat, fish or chicken. Drink enough water.

24 hours before and after the session the following food can better be avoided:

– Alcohol-free beer (because of brewer’s yeast)
– Yeast in vitamin supplements
– Marmite
– Tartex
– Old cheese, cheese spread, processed cheese, various kinds of Brie, Camembert, Emmentaler, Gorgonzola, etc.
– Soy sauce
– Soybean paste
– Tempeh (tahoe is allowed).

The reason why this food can better be avoided is that these nutrition contains tyramine which causes a risk of major blood pressure rises.

Medicine
Ayahuasca contains enzyme inhibiting substances, so-called MAO inhibitors. There are some unfavorable combinations when MAO inhibitors (in Ayahuasca) is combined with certain medicine.

‘Forbidden’ medicine are:
– All sympathomimetic (amphetamine, cocaine, methylphenidate, ephedrine, metaraminol, certain asthma resources).
– Certain non-prescribed medicine for coughs, colds and hay fever. Such as, Otrivin and dextromethorphan containing substances (Dampo, VapoTab “Vicks”, Darolan, and others…).
– Means against obesity, like: Ponderal (Parnate, Nardil, Aurorix).
– Many (serotonergic) antidepressants and other drugs that are prescribed in combination with psychiatric disorders. For example: Prozac, Zoloft, Trazolan, Seroxat, Effexor, but also St. John’s wort, lithium, alprazolam (Xanax), buspirone (Buspar), L-tryptophan (can also be found in health food resources), L-DOPA and Tegretol.
– Certain anti-asthma medication, like: Berotec, Bricanyl, Ventolin, Salbutamol, Terbutaline, Pulmadil, Serevent.
– Drugs for high blood pressure: (beta-blockers, methyldopa, thiazide diuretics, calcium antagonists and ACE inhibitors).
– Pethidine and related narcotic analgesics (aspirin or acetaminophen as a painkiller are safe).
– Antibiotics. You are not allowed to have used Prozac in the two weeks prior to the ritual. Be careful with: antihistamines (in anti-allergy drugs), disulfiram, propranolol, hydralazine, carbamazepine.

This list is incomplete: if you use medicine, always check with your apothecary whether the drugs are allowed to use in combination with MAO inhibitors. It is recommended to tell your doctor (and dentist) that you (are going to) use Ayahuasca (which includes MAO inhibitors).

Physical Illnesses

Diseases that could pose a risk are the following:
– Severe kidney diseases
– Unstable diabetes mellitus
– Epilepsy and severe neurological disorders
– Cardiovascular diseases (angina pectoris, cerebral hemorrhage or strokes)
– Actual or expected pheochromocytoma
– Overactive thyroid gland (hyperthyroidism)
– Known liver disorders
– Deviating blood cells (blood dyscrasias)

Mental Illnesses
Ayahuasca is discouraged if you suffer from one of the following mental diseases: schizophrenia, psychosis or when you have borderline symptoms.

Entheogens and/or other (il)legal drugs
Avoid the use of other entheogens and/or other (il)legal drugs, as: XTC, 2CB, mescaline, herbal ecstasy and so on. We recommend not to use any of the above for at least three days prior to the ritual. We also recommend not to use any of the above for at least three days after the ritual.

Addictions
Ayahuasca is considered as one of the potential resources to cure addiction. In this situation it  is important not to combined Ayahuasca with the particular drug you are addicted to. For example: heroine, methadone, cocaine, etc. If you are addicted to drugs you have to note that it can take some time before all the taken substances are degraded by the human body. For this particular reason it is important to always fill in the duration of use and the last dose of de drug.