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Ayahuasca UK – The Cure for Alcoholism?

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Ayahuasca is generally associated with spiritual ceremonies in South American and Central American communities. In Brazil and Peru, religious leaders known as Shamans prepare Ayahuasca tea for religious rituals and spiritual healing. The tea is brewed from the bark of the Ayahuasca vine – banisteriopsis caapi vine and leaves of chacruna (Psychotria Viridis).

The use of Ayahuasca can be traced back several thousand years in the Amazon region. Traditional and ritualistic usage continues among the people of the Amazon, and its popularity continues to grow.

As a psychoactive brew, Ayahuasca brew contains hallucinogenic properties. It contains the active ingredients dimethyltryptamine (DMT) and monoamine oxidase inhibitors which provide a hallucinogenic effect to the users.

Originally it was used by indigenous South Americans of the Amazon for spiritual rituals. However, over time the use of Ayahuasca has gained traction in Europe and America.

Ayahuasca is prepared by a Shaman. The native Shaman is considered a powerful spiritual healer who uses plant medicine. The plants are sourced from the Amazon rainforest, and the Ayahuasca tea is prepared to satisfy the Shaman, who administers the treatment.

Ayahuasca Treatment Process

The treatment process or the ceremony differs slightly depending on the country or community holding the Ayahuasca ceremony. The ceremony is stored in a sacred place by the Shaman.

The preparation of the participants starts in the weeks preceding the actual ceremony. The participants are required to abstain from drugs such as alcohol, caffeine, and nicotine. In some cases, one is required to follow a strict vegan diet.

Having prepared the brewed tea, Ayahuasca ceremonies are mainly conducted at night. Shamans require the participants to state their wishes on what they would like to be healed from.

As the tea is consumed, the Shaman performs rituals such as songs to enhance the therapeutic healing facilitated by the hallucinogenic effect.

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The Effects of Ayahuasca

The effects start to be felt within 30- 60 minutes after the consumption of the Ayahuasca tea and last anywhere between 3 to 8 hours.

Physical Effects

The immediate physical effects can include diarrhoea and vomiting, which is considered as part of cleansing. Other negative effects of Ayahuasca include:

Psychological Effects

Psychological effects are a result of hallucinations. The effects may vary from one person to the other. They include the following:

As the effects continue, participants experience spiritual feelings of oneness in the world and profound peace and a sense of timelessness.

Note: There has been no evidence of long-term effects of Ayahuasca. As the studies continue, some researchers have argued that the use of Ayahuasca is unlikely to cause significant impairment.

Benefits of Ayahuasca

According to the available research, Ayahuasca has many potential benefits, including:

Cleansing and Purification

Participants taking part in Ayahuasca treatment must first abstain from harmful substances such as drugs and alcohol. Keeping away from toxic substances is key to improving your physical and mental health.

Further, one is supposed to keep away from sexual activities and be a vegan. Medically, a vegetable diet has been proven to have medical benefits. People with insatiable sexual appetites are forced to tame their desires. The body is cleansed and purified from harmful substances and activities.

Mental Health and Emotional Healing

Though not scientifically verified, many people who have undergone Ayahuasca treatment have testified of receiving mental and emotional healing.

Initially, like spiritual healing, Ayahuasca aims to link people to the spiritual world they receive deep healing. When people take Ayahuasca, they often report profound spiritual experiences as a result of their Ayahuasca journey.

They receive peace and calmness in the process. Most people suffering from trauma such as sexual abuse, emotional torture, and the death of loved ones have claimed to have received peace and healing from the Ayahuasca experience. Ayahuasca ceremonies are widely referred to as healing ceremonies.

Recovery From Bad Habits and Addiction

Among many requirements, those taking part in Ayahuasca must drop all manner of bad habits, ranging from substance abuse, immoral activities, and bad eating habits. Importantly, healing from addiction is a significant reason that makes people seek Ayahuasca treatment.

Overcoming Depression and Anxiety

As a side effect of Ayahuasca treatment, one experiences calmness and ecstatic peace. There is a profound relaxation of the mind and body. The components of Ayahuasca tea contain antidepressant compounds which improve moods and emotions by reducing stress and depression.

Overcoming Suicidal Thoughts

Studies have shown Ayahuasca treatment assists, participants in overcoming suicidal thoughts. The calming and relaxing effect goes a long way in enhancing mental health. With a healthy mind, one can overcome suicidal thoughts.

A Greater Understanding of Yourself

Many people have a conflicted awareness of themselves. Ayahuasca treatment assists users in understanding themselves and finding their purpose.

It is aimed at helping participants in dropping negative attitudes and focusing on positivity in their lives. Ayahuasca tends to enhance people have a clear judgment and thus can know their true selves.

Dealing with Fear

At one time, we experience the anticipation of something about to happen – that is called fear. Sometimes fear may be healthy, while at times, it tends to inhabit our lives.

They are several fears, including fear of the unknown, fear of failing, fear of death of loved ones, and fear of loneliness. Ayahuasca treatment enables the participants to overcome undue fear.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Individuals who have post-traumatic stress disorder have attested to finding help from Ayahuasca treatment.

The mind is reprogrammed, and the traumatic thoughts are extinguished hence relieving individuals with post-traumatic stress disorder. However, more research needs to be undertaken in this area to provide more information.

Is Ayahuasca Safe?

Most people wonder if Ayahuasca is safe. Some of the immediate physical effects of Ayahuasca are vomiting and diarrhoea.

While proponents of Ayahuasca argue those effects are necessary for releasing harmful elements, some people find the impact disturbing and challenging.

Health-wise, Ayahuasca is a psychedelic drug, and there is no safe way to use psychedelic drugs. It is likely to be harmful when:

  • Judgment and coordination are required, such as when one is driving.
  • Taken with other substances and drugs
  • One has existing mental problems
  • One is solitary
  • Operating heavy machinery


Further, the participant ought to consider that it is not possible to predict the strength of the effects of Ayahuasca on an individual. Different people react differently. Some people may experience a mild reaction to Ayahuasca, while others experience a severe reaction.

Also, some drugs which don’t have Ayahuasca may be sold in the name of Ayahuasca. Because the use of Ayahuasca is not adequately regulated, some unscrupulous people may pose as shamans and dupe users with the fake concoction.

Fake products may lead to serious health problems. For this reason, those willing to take part in the usage of Ayahuasca ought to take adequate caution to avoid falling into the hands of fraudulent sellers.

People with preexisting mental problems like schizophrenia can experience severe side effects. They, therefore, should not use Ayahuasca.

Another side effect is increased heart rate and blood pressure. People with existing health problems such as heart problems and diabetes could seriously suffer.

Is Ayahuasca Legal?

Ayahuasca contains a component known as DMT. Like in many countries such as the UK and the USA, DMT is considered a schedule one drug, and it is illegal.

However, the plant’s source of it is not unlawful. Significantly, under international and human rights conventions, everyone has a right to worship. Since Ayahuasca is a religious ritual, it is allowed for religious purposes.

Is Ayahuasca Addictive?

To date, there has been no reviewed research to show that Ayahuasca is addictive. Therefore, it would be safe to say the risks of addiction are relatively low.

The drug component in Ayahuasca, which is the DMT, does not lead to addiction. Despite Ayahuasca not having an addictive element, users have mentioned the psychological craving of the experience.

Why are People Embracing Ayahuasca?

Traditionally, Ayahuasca treatment was only used by indigenous communities of the Amazon regions in religious rituals, as a sacrament, and was valued as a powerful medicine. The Indigenous use Ayahuasca for spiritual healing, physical treatment, and mental healing.

In recent years, the interest in Ayahuasca in Western society has massively increased. The use of DMT, which is a mind-altering substance to overcome depression and anxiety, is intriguing.

After hearing stories and testaments of people claiming to have healed from various problems, including addiction and depression, many people have gained interest in Ayahuasca.

In Amazon rainforest countries like Peru, tourism has boomed with tourists as they head to have Ayahuasca treatment.

Also, due to the growing popularity of Ayahuasca, Shamans are taking trips to European countries to administer Ayahuasca treatment to the increasing demand for the treatment. However, it is worth noting that this enterprise is highly unregulated due to inadequate research.

Controversially, the other reason why people go on an Ayahuasca retreat/ use Ahayuasca is for recreation for the high DMT it produces. The DMT is responsible for the hallucinations experienced by the users. In their justification, users of Ayahuasca argue that the ‘highness’ is more spiritual and emotional as opposed to recreational.

Conclusion

For the past two decades, Ayahuasca has gained popularity in Western society. People are increasingly finding Ayahuasca treatment as an alternative to physical, emotional, and spiritual therapy.

Many people have resorted to Ayahuasca retreats – trips to Amazon region countries to try the Ayahuasca treatment. Similarly, Shamans have also made trips to European countries to treat people.

The DMT component in Ayahuasca is considered a drug, and therefore it is illegal in the UK. However, there is an exception to the religious use of Ayahuasca.

For that reason, its legal status is vague in a country like the UK and the Unites States. The potent hallucinogenic property in it causes both positive and negative side effects.

Due to inadequate research and information, it is impossible to verify the effectiveness of the treatment conclusively. It, therefore, follows those willing to use this treatment should take extra caution.

More research needs to be employed in this area to establish scientific facts and information. If you or anyone you know is struggling with addiction, contemplating the treatment can be hard, we at Help4Addiction are here to help.

You can contact us to book a medical assessment and know the severity of the addiction or underlying risks.

Conclusion

For the past two decades, Ayahuasca has gained popularity in Western society. People are increasingly finding Ayahuasca treatment as an alternative to physical, emotional, and spiritual therapy.

Many people have resorted to Ayahuasca retreats – trips to Amazon region countries to try the Ayahuasca treatment. Similarly, Shamans have also made trips to European countries to treat people.

The DMT component in Ayahuasca is considered a drug, and therefore it is illegal in the UK. However, there is an exception to the religious use of Ayahuasca.

For that reason, its legal status is vague in a country like the UK and the Unites States. The potent hallucinogenic property in it causes both positive and negative side effects.

Due to inadequate research and information, it is impossible to verify the effectiveness of the treatment conclusively. It, therefore, follows those willing to use this treatment should take extra caution.

More research needs to be employed in this area to establish scientific facts and information. If you or anyone you know is struggling with addiction, contemplating the treatment can be hard, we at Help4Addiction are here to help.

You can contact us to book a medical assessment and know the severity of the addiction or underlying risks.

Frequently asked questions

It’s psychoactive, a brew that contains hallucinogenic properties.

It contains a drug known as DMT which is illegal in many countries. However, due to religious purposes, Ayahuasca is allowed.

To date, there has been no research that has shown Ayahuasca to be addictive.

Individuals who have used it have claimed to have healed by depression. However, there is little scientific information to show its effectiveness.

Yes. Users have complained of effects such as vomiting and diarrhoea as well as other physiological side effects.

Most of the people who have used Ayahuasca treatment have encouraged other people into embracing the use of Ayahuasca.

About Author

Nicholas Conn

Nicholas Conn

Nicholas Conn is a leading industry addiction expert who runs the UK’s largest addiction advisory service and is regularly featured in the national press, radio and TV. He is the founder and CEO of a drug and alcohol rehab center called Help4addiction, which was founded in 2015. He has been clean himself since 2009 and has worked in the Addiction and Rehab Industry for over a decade. Nick is dedicated to helping others recover and get treatment for drug and alcohol abuse. In 2013, he released a book ‘The Thin White’ line that is available on Amazon.

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