We encourage you to consult with your medical doctor for professional counseling first, especially if you have any questions or doubts. Here is a list of medical restrictions:
Pregnancy, breastfeeding a child under one (1) year;
Epilepsy, detached retina, glaucoma, blood clots, uncontrolled high blood pressure, extremely low blood pressure that is controlled by medication, valve disease, bypass surgery, enlarged heart, cardiovascular disease or irregularities (including prior heart attack);
Strokes, aneurysm, bleeding in the brain, TIAs, seizures or other brain/neurological condition or disease, Addison’s disease;
Prior organ transplant surgery;
Treatment with colonics seven (7) days prior to the retreat flight date;
Treatment with chemotherapy or radiotherapy four (4) weeks prior to or following the retreat flight date;
Aneurysms and family history of aneurysms;
Use of prescription blood thinners such as Coumadin;
Osteoporosis that is serious enough whereby intense movement could cause physical issues;
The end of a fast that is more than three (3) days prior the retreat flight date;
Any recent physical injuries that are not fully healed and could be re-injured through intense movement;
Hospitalization for any psychiatric condition or emotional crisis within the last ten (10) years;
Prior diagnosis by a medical professional of manic disorder, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, psychosis, other serious mental conditions regardless of whether or not medication is taken;
Any other medical or physical conditions which would impair or affect your ability to engage in any activities that involve physical or emotional release or which would cause any risk of harm to you or other participants.
Please let us know if you will be menstruating during the retreat.
Do not suddenly stop taking any prescribed medications without discussing the matter with your doctor.
The retreat participants cannot take some medications until the retreat is over. Please inform us if you take any medications or supplements. Some of the drugs may cause side effects when discontinued, and plenty of time should be allowed for them to subside. Do not abruptly stop taking any medication (including antidepressants) without discussing the matter with your doctor. It is not safe to work with Ayahuasca and some other plant medicines if you take some of the drugs, including but not limited to: Actifed, Adderall, Alaproclate, Albuterol (Proventil, Ventolin), Amantadine hydrochloride (Symmetrel), Amineptine, Amitriptaline, Amoxapine (Asendin), Atomoxedine, Befloxetone, Benadryl, Benylin, Benzedrine, Benzphetamine (Didrex), Bicifadine, Brasofensine, Brofaromine, Bupropion (Wellbutrin), Buspirone (BuSpar), Butriptyline, Carbamazepine (Tegretol, Epitol), Chlorpheniramine, Chlor Trimeton, Cimoxetone, Citalopram, Clomipramine (Anafranil), Codeine, Cyclobenzaprine (Flexeril), Cyclizine (Marezine), Dapoxotine, Desipramine (Pertofrane, Norpramin), Desvenlafaxine, Dextroamphetamine (Dexedrine), Dextromethorphan (DXM), Dibenzepin, Dienolide (Kavapyrone Desmethoxyyangonin), Diethylpropion, Disopyramide (Norpace), Disulfiram (Antabuse), Dopamine (Intropin), Dosulepin, Doxepin (Sinequan), Duloxetine, Emsam, Ephedrine, Epinephrine (Adrenalin), Escitalopram, Femoxitine, Fenfluramine (Pondimin), Flavoxate Hydrochloride (Urispas), Fluoxetine (Prozac), Fluvoxamine, Furazolidone (Furoxone), Guanethedine, Guanadrel (Hylorel), Guanethidine (Ismelin), Hydralazine (Apresoline), 5 Hydroxytryptophan, Imipramine (Tofranil), Iprindole, Iproniazid (Marsilid, Iprozid, Ipronid, Rivivol, Propilniazida), Iproclozide, Isocarboxazid (Marplan), Isoniazid (Laniazid, Nydrazid), Isoniazid rifampin (Rifamate, Rimactane), Isoproterenol (Isuprel), L dopa (Sinemet), Levodopa (Dopar, Larodopa, Linezolid (Zyvox, Zyvoxid), Lithium (Eskalith), Lofepramine, Loratadine (Claritin), Maprotiline (Ludiomil), Medifoxamine, Melitracen, Meperidine (Demerol), Metaproterenol (Alupent, Metaprel), Metaraminol (Aramine), Methamphetamine (Desoxyn), Methyldopa (Aidomet), Methylphenidate (Ritalin), Mianserin, Milnacipran, Minaprine, Mirtazapine (Remeron), Moclobemide, Montelukast (Singulair), Nefazodone, Nialamide, Nisoxetine, Nomifensine, Norepinephrine (Levophed), Nortriptyline (Aventyl), Oxybutynin chloride (Ditropan), Oxymetazoline (Afrin), Orphenadrine (Norflex), Pargyline (Eutonyl), Parnate, Paroxetine (Paxil), Pemoline (Cylert), Percocet, Pethedine (Dem erol), Phendimetrazine (Plegiline), Phenergen, Phenmetrazine, Phentermine, Phenylephrine (Dimetane, Dristan decongestant, Neo Synephrine), Phenylpropanolamine, Phenelzie (Nardil), Procarbazine (Matulane), Procainamide (Pronestyl), Protriptyline (Vivactil), Pseudoephedrine, Oxymetazoline (Afrin), Quinidine (Quinidex), Rasagiline (Azilect), Reboxetine, Reserpine (Serpasil), Risperidone, Salbutemol, Salmeterol, Selegiline (Eldepryl), Sertraline (Zoloft), Sibutramine, Sumatriptan (Imitrex), Terfenadine (Seldane D), Tegretol, Temaril, Tesofensine, Theophylline (Theo Dur), Tianeptine, Toloxatone, Tramidol, Tranylcypromine (Parnate), Trazodone, Tricyclic antidepressants (Amitriptyline, Elavil), Trimipramine (Surmontil), Triptans, Vanoxerine, Venlafaxine (Effexor), Viloxezine, Yohimbine, Zimelidine, Ziprasidone (Geodon).
It is not safe to combine Ayahuasca with any medication that contains Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors (MAOI’s). These medications are known to cause dangerous side effects when taken in conjunction with Ayahuasca. It is critical that you stop taking these drugs and allow plenty of time for your system to be cleared of these substances prior to the ceremony.
It is not safe to combine Ayahuasca with any medication which has an effect on the serotonin system, including Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs) (i.e. antidepressants such as Wellbutrin, Prozac, Zoloft, Effexor, etc). Combining these medications with Ayahuasca can induce serotonin syndrome – far more severely than with foods containing tryptophan, and with potentially fatal results. We require guests discontinue taking SSRI medications prior to applying for a retreat to allow the system to clear in time. Some of these drugs may cause side effects when discontinued, and plenty of time should be allowed for these to subside.
Please note that the herbal antidepressant St. John’s Wort (Hypericum Perforatum) also must not be taken within 2 weeks of working with Ayahuasca. It is important to suspend any kind of psycho-pharmacy and pharmaceutical depression treatments between 14 to 35 days before drinking Ayahuasca.
Using Tricyclic antidepressants within two weeks of taking MAOIs may cause serious side effects including sudden fever, extremely high blood pressure, convulsions, and death.
Using Fluoxetine (Prozac) within five weeks of taking MAOIs may cause high fever, rigidity, high blood pressure, mental changes, confusion and hypomania.
Using Meperidine (Demerol) with pharmaceutical MAOIs has resulted in deaths from a single dose.
Using cocaine with MAOIs may cause a severe increase in blood pressure, increasing the chances for stroke and cerebral hemorrhage and making it possible to overdose on a relatively small amount of cocaine. (A fatality has been recorded involving combining Peganum harmala and cocaine.)
Using Bupropion (Wellbutrin) within two weeks of taking MAOIs may cause serious side effects such as seizures.
Using Buspirone (Buspar) with MAOIs may cause high blood pressure.
Using Carbamazepine (Tegretol) with MAOIs may increase seizures.
Using CNS depressants with MAOIs may increase the depressant effects.
Using Dextromethorphan with MAOIs may cause excitement, high blood pressure, and fever, or brief episodes of psychosis.
Using Tryptophan with MAOIs may cause disorientation, confusion, amnesia, delirium agitation, hypomanic signs, shivering.
Using alcohol with MAOIs may cause side effects like angina (chest pain) or headaches. The headache may mask or be mistaken for hypertensive crisis caused by MAOI interaction.
Using Kava with MAOIs may result in hypotensive crisis (severe blood pressure drop).
Using Temaril with MAOIs may increase chance of side effects.
Special note to diabetics: MAOIs may change the amount of insulin or oral antidiabetic medication that you need.
Other medications that must be discontinued are decongestants, cold medications, allergy medications, antihistamines, sedatives, tranquillizers, amphetamines (including Adderall), some hypertensive medications, sympathomimetic amines including pseudoephedrine and ephedrine, carbamazipine, methylphemidate (Ritalin), macromerine, phenelanine, tyrosine, tryptophan, asarone/calamus, asthma inhalers, diet pills and appetite suppressants.
Smoking marijuana before the Ayahuasca session may possibly darken the overall experience acting as a blockage for the visionary plant to manifest in the fullest way. Given the general amplified sensitivity of all participants of Ayahuasca session, marijuana can sometimes negatively affect not just the person who used it, but also potentially other participants’ experiences as well as the overall energy level of the medicine circle.
According to a traditional Amazonian shamanic prospective when participant is working with medicinal plants, especially Ayahuasca and some other important medicinal plants like Chiric Sanango, it is preferable to not take any other substances or medicines, as it may interfere with the plants energy and provoke unwanted reactions (cutipado).
If you have any doubt about whether you should join the retreat, please consult your physician or therapist and let us know so we can address all your concerns.