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Ayahuasca Retreat Preparation

The ultimate guide on how to prepare your mind and body leading up to your ayahuasca and master plant dieta retreat

Ayahuasca is a sacred plant medicine that has been used for centuries in traditional Amazonian healing practices. It is a powerful psychedelic brew that contains the MAO inhibitor harmaline and the DMT-containing Psychotria viridis plant. Many people who seek healing, personal growth, and spiritual experiences turn to ayahuasca as a means of achieving these goals. However, ayahuasca is not a magic pill, and it requires proper preparation to be effective and safe.

In this article, we will guide you through the essential steps of preparing for an ayahuasca retreat, including dietary restrictions, mental and emotional preparation


The Importance of Preparation

Preparing for a plant medicine retreat is a crucial step in ensuring a safe and transformative experience. A well-planned and thorough preparation process can help you to set clear intentions, address any physical or mental health concerns, and create a supportive environment for your journey. The following are some key steps to take before attending a plant medicine retreat.

Consult with a Medical Professional

It is important to consult with a medical professional before embarking on a plant medicine retreat, especially if you have a pre-existing medical condition or are taking any medications. Some natural substances used in plant medicine retreats can interact with certain medications or exacerbate existing health conditions. A medical professional can advise you on the safety of attending a retreat and provide any necessary guidance.

Research the Retreat Center

Researching the retreat center is an essential part of the preparation process. It is important to choose a center that prioritizes safety and ethical practices. Look for centers that provide detailed information about their facilitators that have good proof of experience. Questions you might ask is: Are the Shamans/Healers part of the retreat or are hired in? How experienced are the Shamans? Do the retreat have safety personal during the ceremonies? You may also want to read reviews from previous attendees to gain insight into their experiences.

Set Clear Intentions

Setting clear intentions for your journey is an important part of the preparation process. Reflect on your reasons for attending the retreat and what you hope to gain from the experience. Setting intentions can help you to focus your attention and energy during the retreat, and provide a sense of purpose and direction.

Practice Self-Care

Practicing self-care is an important part of the preparation process. Take time to engage in activities that promote relaxation and stress relief, such as yoga, meditation, or spending time in nature. Take care of your physical and emotional health, and prioritize rest and relaxation.

Follow a Clean Diet

Following a clean and healthy diet in the weeks leading up to the retreat can help to prepare your body and mind for the experience. Avoid consuming alcohol, drugs, processed foods, and excessive sugar and caffeine. Focus on eating whole foods, fruits, and vegetables, and staying hydrated.

Weeks Prior to Your Ayahuasca Retreat

Before we dive into the specifics of the ayahuasca diet, it's important to understand why it's necessary. Ayahuasca is a powerful plant medicine that can bring about intense physical and emotional experiences. The ayahuasca diet is designed to prepare your body and mind for these experiences and to minimize any potential risks.

The ayahuasca diet is typically started at least two weeks before the ceremony and continued for a few days afterward. During this time, you will eliminate certain foods and substances from your diet while focusing on simple, nutrient-dense foods.

At Least 6 Weeks Before: Clearing Serotonin System Medication

If you're currently taking medication that affects the serotonin system, including Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs) and MAOI drugs, you'll need to clear these from your system at least six weeks before the ceremony. This process should be done with the guidance of a medical professional, as suddenly stopping these medications can be dangerous.

At Least 4 Weeks Before: Eliminating Pharmaceuticals

At least four weeks before the ceremony, you'll need to eliminate all pharmaceutical drugs, both prescription and over-the-counter. This includes allergy pills, hormonal supplements, NSAIDs, and more. Once again, it's important to consult with a medical professional before stopping any medication.

At Least 2 Weeks Before: Eliminating Certain Foods and Substances

At least two weeks before the ceremony, it's time to start eliminating certain foods and substances from your diet. These include:

  • Sex of any sort, including self-pleasure or erotic fantasizing

  • Alcohol

  • Cannabis

  • Violent or disturbing media

  • Recreational drugs of any kind, especially synthetic DMT or other psychoactive substances

  • Salt and salty foods

  • Spicy food

  • Processed foods

  • Pork, red meat, cured meats

  • Cheese

At Least 1 Week Before: Further Eliminating Certain Foods and Substances

In the week leading up to the ceremony, it's time to eliminate even more foods and substances from your diet. These include:

  • Sugar, natural or artificial sweeteners

  • Fermented foods

  • Fried foods

  • Yeast or yeast products

  • Vinegar or pickled foods

  • Caffeine (coffee, caffeinated tea, synthetic energy drinks)

  • Dairy products, especially yogurt

  • Animal fats, including butter

  • Nutritional supplements like protein powders that may contain tyramines

  • Sweets and chocolate

  • Synthetic soaps, perfumes, toiletries, etc.


In conclusion, preparation is a crucial part of ensuring a safe and transformative plant medicine retreat. By consulting with a medical professional, researching the retreat center, setting clear intentions, following a clean diet, and practicing self-care, you can create a supportive environment for your journey towards healing and personal growth. Our family at Epicenter Ayahuasca is here to support you in your preparation process and provide you with valuable resources and guidance. Remember, the journey towards healing and personal growth is a deeply personal one, and we are here to support you every step of the way.


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