All about Ayahuasca


There have been stories all around the world on people traveling to many different destinations for the consumption of ayahuasca. Pronounced as ah-yuh-wah-skuh, this antidote has several long term benefits.

But, what is Ayahuacasa exactly?

Ayahuasca is a brew which is also known as la purge, vine, and tea. The stalks of the Banisteriopsis caapi vine, leaves of the Psychotria Viridis shrub along with other ingredients, and plants are used to make this brew. The ancient Amazonian tribes used this drink for a religious and spiritual purpose. It is continued to be used by religious committees in North America, Brazil, and Santo Daime.

Earlier, Ayahuasca ceremonies were lead by experienced healers known as curandero or shaman. These healers used Psychotria Viridis shrub leaves and Banisteriopsis caapi vine stalks along with water to boil for preparation of the brew. In today's world, people use ayahuasca by the person who searches for a way to open their minds, past traumas healing, or to experience the Ayahuasca journey.

The main ingredients of ayahuasca have hallucinogenic properties. N-dimethyltryptamine (DMT) which is a psychedelic substance is present in Psychotria Viridis. As DMT also is low bioavailability it is combined with Banisteriopsis caapi as it contains β-carbolines which are MAO inhibitors. hallucinations, euphoria, and out-of-body experiences are some of the effects of ayahuasca related to the central nervous system.

It should be taken only under the guidance of a shaman as it leads to altered consciousness. Before becoming a part of the ayahuasca ceremony, one must leave alcohol, cigarettes, drugs, caffeine, and sex. The person should follow the diet of a vegan or vegetarian, at least 3 weeks before going for this experience. All these are mandatory as it helps to remove the toxins.

Related Article: Brussels Sprouts: A Quick Overview

Ayahuasca experience and ceremony

The ceremony lasts until the effects of this brew end and mostly happens at nights. Participants are offered doses of ayahuasca and some are given different doses as well, as soon as space is cleared and blessed by the leading shaman. The effects are shown in people 20 to 60 minutes after consuming the dose which can further last up to 2 to 6 hours depending on the quantity given. Symptoms including vomiting, diarrhea, euphoria feeling, hallucinations, psychedelic effects, paranoia, and fear are common. Each person experiences different things every time they take a part in this ceremony.

Benefits of Ayahuasca

People who have taken part in the ceremony claims to have a long term, positive, and life-altering changes.

  • It is beneficial to brain health because of DMT and β-carbolines content. These ingredients demonstrate neurorestorative and neuroprotective qualities. The damage of the brain cells of humans, caused by lack of oxygen and increased cell survival is protected due to the consumption of DMT. β-carboline has a neuroprotective, anti-inflammatory, and memory-boosting effect.

  • A person's emotional regulation, psychological well-being overall, and brain mindfulness capacity is also improved. Studies also show that a person with stress, PTSD, depression, and anxiety are also benefited. The ceremony of individuals can last up to various days depending on person to person.

Ayahuasca side effects

While some of the normal side effects are mentioned above. This Brew can have many deadly side effects as well. When a participant is on psychiatric medications, antidepressants, Parkinson's control medicine, weight loss, and cough medications, they can have a worse effect.

People with psychiatric disorders including schizophrenia, should not go for Ayahuasca ceremonies.

It can further increase the blood pressure and heart rate resulting in various heart conditions.

As the shaman is responsible for giving the dosage and taking care of the participant, a small mistake by him can be life-taking.

So, if you want to consume ayahuasca tea or take part in the ayahuasca ceremony, make sure to do it under the guidance of an experienced shaman.