Amazonian Plant Medicine Precautions

Amazonian Plant Medicine Precautions

Santuario uses a screening process to determine the needs and best interests of the individual. Travellers must come to Santuario with clear and honest intentions and reveal information that is relevant to their health and well being and the possible ramifications of their participation for themselves and others. In certain cases, it is not recommended that the individual participate in plant medicines ceremonies to the possible exacerbation of present health conditions. It is impossible for us to accept any participants carrying communicable or infectious diseases. Additionally, if the visitor has any other condition that may impact themselves or others at the centre, we need to be informed. This may have a direct bearing on whether or not it is advisable that they come to the center. Your health is your responsibility and it is up to you to take the proper health precautions prior to and during your stay at Santuario. It is also highly recommended that you consult with your health professional before undertaking retreats. You are the sole agent responsible for the following of these precautions and have sole liability for any adverse effects that may result during the taking of plant medicines at Santuario.

In some cases, it may be recommended that a participant begin to work with other plants for a period of time to prepare their bodies before participating in ceremonies.

It must be noted, that it is still possible to benefit greatly from the other transformative therapies and plants offered at Santuario without immediately ingesting entheogenic plant medicines.

Health Conditions: Important

For those affected by chronic heart conditions, severe high blood pressure, or are suffering a life threatening illness, it is not recommended that you take Amazonian medicines unless under the advisement of a medical professional. Additionally,  psychiatric conditions such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and other dis-associative conditions, including antisocial and suicidal tendencies and mood disorders should not participate in these ceremonies. It is expected that you will reveal any underlying health conditions you may possess to representatives at Santuario before registration and when arriving at the center.

Prescription Drugs

Prescription drugs do not mix with plant medicines and it is recommended that you cease usage of these drugs before working with Amazonian plants. Anyone taking any form of antidepressant drugs should have ceased usage up to six weeks before their arrival. This is also the case for antibiotics or antihistamines or decongestants, asthma inhalers (with high amounts of caffeine), which should be ceased more than a week before participation. Other prescription drugs such as narcotics, sedatives, tranquillizers, anti-hypertensive agents (used to treat high blood pressure), analgesics like Meperidine, anti-Parkinson drugs (medicines used to reduce the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease) like Levopoda, drugs used to treat heart conditions, like Dopamine (brand name: Intropin), neurological prescriptions like Carbamazipine (a drug that eliminates seizures, but has also severe side effects), and sympathomimetic drugs (substances that mimic the effects of the hormones adrenaline and noradrenaline) like amphetamine and tyrosine. Amphetamine salts-based medication (brand name: Adderall) used (in the US & Canada) to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and narcolepsy, is equally not compatible with entheogenic plant medicines. Additionally, taking products like Clonazepamis, a benzodiazepine drug prescribed to treat seizures and panic disorder, with anxiolytic, anticonvulsant, muscle relaxant, and hypnotic properties (brand names: Klonopin, Rivotril, Ravotril, Rivatril, Clonex, Paxam, or Kriadex), are not complimentary to plant medicines.

People affected by Addison’s Disease must not take plant medicines (as well as any other medication/medicine that would alter their hydro-electrolytic balance).

Diabetes, other conditions

People with diabetes must not take psychotropic plant medicines as it may result in a sudden alteration in blood sugar levels. If you are affected by Chrone’s Disease and/or Intestinal Ulcers, it is not recommended that you take ayahuasca first three months of your retreat. The maestro will have another recommended treatment, after which it is possible to partake of the ayahuasca brew.


If you have an addiction or are a user of any illegal substance such as cannabis, cocaine, heroine, crack, mescaline, or phenethylamines (homologues of amphetamines), we must be informed immediately as most of these substances are incompatible with many plant medicines. Equally, if you have any alcohol dependency, please inform us beforehand.

**No illegal drugs or alcoholic drinks of any kind are permitted on Santuario.


Women in their menstrual cycle normally should have no problem participating in ceremonies though it is suggested to inform the maestro in advance if you experience fluctuations in mood or other symptoms.

It is not recommended for women who are pregnant to take Amazonian plant medicines.

For more information on Amazonian plant medicine precautions, please refer to the a very useful guide published by the Ethnobotanical Stewardship Council.

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