Dieta GUIDELINES For Ayahuasca

The Ayahuasca Diet - What To Eat?

Preparing Mentally & Physically For Ayahuasca

Before you are able to communicate with plant teachers, you must prepare to undergo a rigorous process of mental, physical, and spiritual purification. Abstaining from any substance or activity that clouds the mind is essential for the ayahuasca diet to have its full ability to promote physical healing and spiritual transformation. Likewise, setting intention is critical to creating alignment mentally toward deep healing.

In order to maximize your growth, you will need to prepare your body in the weeks leading up to your trip. Eliminating certain foods from your diet will help to reduce the amount of purging needed to rid the body of unwanted toxins. A strict diet in the weeks before and after retreat requires discipline; admittedly it is not easy to forego enjoyable foods. 

However you will be demonstrating your commitment and dedication to the healing process and creating the foundation necessary to impart profound healing to the body, mind and spirit. Likewise, you will need to treat your body with care and respect in the weeks following. 

It is expected that all serious participants follow the recommended food restrictions listed below; they are important to ensure your safety and maximise the healing potential of the plant medicines. If you are worried that this may difficult for you, please speak with us about your concerns when submitting your application.

Preparing Mentally With Ceremonial Mapacho

Foods To Eat On An Ayahuasca Diet

Typically, an diet tailored to suit ayahuasca ceremonies will consist of a minimal amount of animal products – pork, alcohol, and sex must be abstained from. Your diet should consist of mostly fresh and cooked vegetables, beans or other legumes, fresh fruits or juices. Carbs such as rice, oats, and other cereals are fine to eat. For cooking oils, choose ovile oil or ghee butter, or find a recipe that can go without. Leading up to retreat, it is okay to have fresh organic eggs or fish. However, no animal products will be consumed on the day of ceremony.

Foods To Avoid Before Ayahuasca

Please abstain from the following foods and activities two weeks:

  • Pork
  • Sexual activities of any kind, including masturbation
  • Alcohol
  • Marijuana (Four weeks of abstinence is recommened)
  • All street drugs (cocaine, MDMA, amphetamines, etc.)
  • Spicy foods
  • Ice, ice cream, or ice cold drinks

Please abstain from the following foods in addition to those above one week:

  • Refined sugars
  • Red meat
  • Junk food of any kind
  • Salt and pepper (if you must use salt, use it very sparingly)
  • Oils (if you must use oil, use olive or coconut oil very sparingly)
  • Animal fats (lard, etc.)
  • Carbonated and fermented drinks (including diet sodas, energy drinks, non-alcoholic beer and Kombucha)
  • Dairy products
  • Fermented foods (kimchi, sauerkraut, vinegar, kefir, pickles, yoghurt)
  • Caffeine & other stimulants
Sitting by light on Ayahuasca Diet

Pork, along with red meat, fermented foods, yogurt, and alcohol, all contain high amounts of tyramine. Since ayahuasca is an MAO-inhibitor, it temporarily inhibits the activation of the monoamine oxidase (MAO). This is an essential enyzme to breakdown tyramine, so without it you may end up with headaches and hypertension, so we recommend avoiding these foods.

It is very important to try and abstain from all sexual activities for two weeks prior. Sex, even masturbation, is a powerful energy exchange for the body. It draws from a vital reservoir, which when full, facilitates the profound magic and healing that drinking ayahuasca is capable of. Also, antidepressants like SSRIs, MAO-inhibitors, sleep medications, are not recommended for two to six weeks before your ayahuasca retreat. Upon application we will discuss further any medical concerns or questions you may have.

Why Is Preparation And Diet So Important?

It is critical to understand that in the context of ayahuasca as a medicine, the body is a vessel. The more prepared you are physically, the deeper you will be able to receive ayahuasca as a medicine. We all know how to be a little more healthy, and the weeks leading up to meeting pachamama is the most imperative time to take action. Doing so, your physical vessel will have a strong energetic charge, and be at it’s maximum capacity to enable the plant medicine. Strictly adhering to these principles will enable ayahuasca to have a more unobstructed path to do it’s work and allow you to have the most beneficial experience.

Much like how in yoga, asanas prepare the body for meditation, a dieta prepares the body for ayahuasca. 

Our bodies absorb an immense amount of information somatically in this day and age. All of our thoughts, emotions, and external stimulations leave an imprint in the body. Over time, as the body absorbs and filters information in your life, and we can become feeling ‘clogged’ or ‘blocked’. The somatic impressions left behind can have serious impacts on our well being and day to day lives. 

One beautiful aspect of the plant medicines is the innate ability to return a state of flow to the body, removing blockages and allowing energy and life to pass through more freely. Plant medicines can enable the dietero to feel deeply restored and reset, enabling them to move forward more freely without mental and physical constraints that were holding them back.

A strict diet in the week before, during, and one week after retreat requires discipline; admittedly, it is not easy to forego enjoyable foods. By doing so, however, you will demonstrate your commitment and dedication to the healing process and create the foundation necessary to heal the body, mind, and spirit profoundly.

Remember that if the ayahuasca diet is considered a demonstration of determination, it is easy to see how the physical act of abstinence and eating is just touching the surface. Being unhappy or complaining about the dieta, fantasizing about sex, or favorite foods is also a demonstration of determination or the lack thereof.

Preventing oneself from getting angry, from doubting or losing faith in the process, or thinking negatively about the Dieta are also essential restrictions. The Dieta does not just take place at the dinner table,

It happens 24 hours a day, even during sleep.

Likewise, you will need to treat your body with care and respect in the weeks following. It is expected that all serious participants follow the recommended food restrictions.

Icaro Sung by Don Miguel to healing tree

What You Will Eat During Retreat

Your days spent at our retreat center will start with a light vegetarian breakfast around 8 am. 

Lunches will be mainly vegetarian, with the occasional option for fresh fish when available.

Dinner is typically at 7pm where we gather communally and eat until silent hour.

On ceremony days, the last meal is lunch, so you will be fasting for a minimum of 5 hours before your ayahuasca ceremonies. Some participants may choose to fast for the entire ceremony day.

Post Retreat Dieta

Don Miguel will disclose the post dietary requirements at the end of the Dieta. Often it is 5 DAYS long where he will invite to avoid:
 -No sexual activity or masturbation
-Ice, ice cream, or ice-cold drinks
-Raw meat and fish

 However, it will be longer than five days for pork, alcohol, sex, and other drugs, usually a minimum of two weeks.

Frequently Asked

Can You Eat Avocado, Dairy, or Honey Before Ayahuasca?

You should avoid all dairy products as well as avocado, chocolate, and refined sugar. Honey is okay but try to limit your intake and use natural, organic honey.

What Is An Example Of An Ayahuasca Meal Plan?

The majority of your food should be plant based. If possible, eat mostly raw, unprocessed foods and avoid pork, alcohol, and dairy. If you are looking for inspiration, check out our ayahuasca meal plan.

What Are The Benefits Of Following The Diet?

There are many benefits to adhering to a strict diet before, during, and after using ayahuasca or being on a retreat. Physically, by preparing the body prior to ayahuasca, you allow a more clear, unobstructed path for the medicine to do it’s work. The plant won’t have to work to clear these things first, and will be able to do the deeper work. Secondly, the committing to the dieta physically and mentally, opens up the infinite possibility that is present in plant medicine. You need to have a positive mindset for the most profound growth to occur. You’ll open yourself up to the ability to heal hidden trauma, improve your mood and self-image, and maintain healthier relationships and lifestyle.

Is A Typical Ayahuasca Dieta The Same As A Master Plant Dieta?

Many ayahuasca ceremonies are not accompanied by what is called a ‘Master Plant Dieta’. At AYA Healing Retreats, this involves a teacher plant which is dieted alongside a series of ayahuasca ceremonies. Currently, we have 6 teacher plants available for your master plant dieta, such as bobinsana or noya rao. Read more about Master Plant Dietas and find a plant which calls to you.

What Is The Difference Between Dieta and Diet?

The ayahuasca diet involves food restrictions that usually have interactions with MAOIs present with ayahuasca brew. MAOIs block monoamine oxidase, which is an essential enzyme to break down tyramine. Foods excessively high in tyramine include anything aged, cured, or fermented, as well as pork and alcohol. Otherwise, you may experience headaches and high blood pressure.

On the other hand, a dieta, is best described as a contract between a dietero or dietera and the curandero. The terms of the contract are decided and agreed upon prior to the dieta taking place, sometimes this is as short as eight days, although more common would be months and even years.The general agreement in a dieta is that the curanderos or student will sacrifice the pleasures of physical stimulation by refraining from sex, alcohol, and sweet, spicy, salty, or rich foods.

In return of this sacrifice, the plant spirits agree to teach, guide, protect, strengthen, or endow special abilities to the person during the Dieta. 

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Our comprehensive screening questionnaire has been developed in partnership with the International Centre for Ethnobotanical Education, Research and Service (ICEERS). Please take your time to answer it as honestly and with as much detail as possible. This information will remain strictly confidential and will only be used to assess your suitability for a place on retreat with AYA Healing Retreats and keep you safe

Please remember that the purpose of this screening questionnaire is to determine whether plant medicine healing is suitable for you…not whether you are suitable for plant medicine healing. Plant medicines are tools, like any other healing modality and like other tools for healing experiencing them entails certain risks. We need to make sure that our plant medicines will not compromise your wellbeing or harm you in any way before we allow you to begin your healing journey with us. In short, we care about your safety and we need to do what we can to ensure that during your time with us you are not at risk of harm. Plant medicines can be dangerous if the plants are not the right fit for the individual. Your answers to this questionnaire will help us to determine whether the plants we intend to use are going to help, rather than harm you