One of the most important aspects of working with ayahuasca is adhering to a time-honoured tradition of following a special diet in order to prepare not just the body, but also the mind and soul to incorporate the healing energy of ayahuasca. This diet also shows the spirit of ayahuasca your intention, and is a test of discipline and commitment.
The central aspects of the diet we follow at the Temple are common to the teachings of all ayahuasquero/as across the Peruvian Amazon. In the case of some of the food restrictions, there is also definitive scientific evidence that they are essential for safety. We advise you to begin the diet at least 2 weeks before a 12 day workshop and to continue the diet for at least 2 weeks after the last ceremony. It is essential to continue the diet to ensure the ikaros you have received and any possible plant remedies you are prescribed are given sufficient time to integrate.
The food prepared at the Temple is prepared by our wonderful cooks who provide you with a well rounded, healthy and plentiful diet throughout your stay while adhering to the essential restrictions.
Abstain from the following at least two weeks prior to, during, and for two weeks after a workshop:
- Salt, pepper, and spicy seasonings (it is recommended to have a very small intake of salt every 5 days)
- Sugar and sweets
- Cacao, cocoa, and chocolate
- Red meat
- Smoked and aged fish
- Oils and fats (ok to use sparingly)
- Fizzy drinks (including diet sodas)
- Hot peppers
- Ice, ice cream, or ice cold drinks
- Dairy, including cheese
- Overripe, bruised, and dried fruits
- Miso, and soups made with bouillon or stock cubes
- Vinegar, sauerkraut, and other pickled foods
- Tofu, soy sauce, and other fermented foods
- Canned foods
- Protein extracts, powdered protein supplements and shakes
- Yeast and yeast extracts
- No recreational drugs, including synthetic, semi-synthetic, or psychedelic (We require that you devote your whole energy to working with ayahuasca. This includes cannabis in all forms.
- Some prescription drugs are restricted (please let us know if you are currently taking any medication, especially antidepressants or antibiotics, as you fill out the medical questionnaire during booking).
- No sexual activities of any kind, including masturbation.
- Avoidance of synthetic soaps, perfumes, toiletries, etc.
- Relative solitude, minimal talking, and no idle chit-chat (For those in industrialized countries, a modern dieta would include a fast from television, radio, mass media, and advertising.)
- Women in the first three days of their menstruation traditionally do not participate in ceremony. (This is not rooted in any disrespect for the feminine but because their energy is very strong at this time, and can direct the energy in the maloka and significantly influence the group dynamic.)
- Ayahuasca is not compatible with pregnancy.
By eliminating the above from your diet, you will prepare your body physically for the ayahuasca journey, and perhaps also reducing the amount of “purging” needed to clean your physical body. In addition to the physical aspects, by showing your commitment and determination to ayahuasca and the master plants, you are creating the foundations of your relationship with them and offering them the respect which is essential for this work.
Critical Note – Due to a very limited number of of past guests who have not adhered to dietary restrictions after leaving a workshop, we need to re-emphasize that maintaining the diet is an absolutely essential factor in the healing process. The three most fundamental restrictions after a workshop are street drugs (cocaine, ecstasy, LSD, etc), sexual activity and pork. If a guest decides to not adhere to this critical advice after leaving the Temple, we cannot be held liable for the consequences (which can be severe psychological and energetic damage).
Please consider the work of the healers like a ‘healing mirror’ that is delicately woven onto the system of our guests. In the first two weeks immediately preceding a workshop, if the three key restrictions are not adhered to, then the mirror can be smashed. To repair the mirror and the potentially fractured psyche is then an extremely difficult process.