Iboga Therapy Preparation Guide
The following information is very important, please read carefully and completely.
Intention and Awareness
Iboga is a powerful herbal substance that may induce profound physical and psychological changes. In addition to its usefulness for addicts in recovery to reduce withdrawal symptoms and cravings, Iboga is a powerful psychoactive agent with the ability to catalyze an experience that may induce profound life changes in anyone.
Centering and grounding yourself will prepare you to maximize the potential for a deeper transformative and healing experience. Taking the time to center yourself through activities such as writing, walking, meditation, yoga/stretching or anything that helps to provide personal insight, body awareness and reflection is a great way to prepare for your experience. Allowing yourself some personal space and time to reflect on your inner thoughts and emotions will greatly benefit your overall experience and aid in reintegration.
Pay attention to your expectations. While Iboga therapy can be very effective at healing (as in significantly removing withdrawal symptoms) and facilitating awareness of the deeper personal work that you have to do over the long term, it is not a 'miracle cure' and will not solve your problems for you. Expecting Iboga therapy to solve all your problems and fix you may lead to disappointment, think of rather as a tool to help you heal yourself and as a first step on your journey towards well-being. Empower yourself to look deeply into what is needed in your life so that you may gain the fullest potential from your experience. Take your time to consider your existing state of health and what you may need to do over the long term to maximize your healing process. Dedicate time towards exploring your physical, emotional and psychological needs and be gentle with yourself knowing that it takes time to heal. The transformative nature of the Iboga experience will be most effective if you are dedicated and committed to following through over the long term with the personal insight you receive. Take time to think about what you would like to gain or learn from your experience and set some intentions to help guide your way.
Seeking out resources and support in your life will greatly enhance your success. The path of healing can be a long road that requires focus and perseverance. Iboga therapy can assist you on path to this greater awareness, though it is ultimately up to you to unlock the door to your own great potential.
In the week before therapy
Of special note: If you are a female of child-bearing age, you must ensure that you are not pregnant at the time of your therapy as the impact of Iboga on an embryo or fetus is unknown.
Take a balanced high potency multivitamin and mineral complex daily (without iron if you are male) plus 500 mgs of magnesium daily (preferably a chelated form such as magnesium citrate or another bio-available form – avoid magnesium oxide, it is not well absorbed by the body) to help balance electrolytes, smooth muscle tissue and protect your heart.
Eat nutritious, well-balanced meals and simple foods. Foods such as whole grains, fresh vegetables and fruit will be beneficial.
Avoid greasy, fatty and processed foods. If you eat meat, please eat only small portions of lean meats or fish. Too many fatty foods can make your liver sluggish and it is through the liver that Iboga is mostly processed.
Avoid junk food, too much sugar (especially pop or soft drinks), too much salt and caffeine (small amounts of green tea are ok if you are caffeine dependent, but try not to drink coffee or too much strong black tea in the days leading up to your Iboga therapy).
Do not eat or drink any grapefruit or quinine (found in tonic water). Drink at least 8 tall glasses of pure fresh water (2 liters) per day.
Replenish your electrolytes: Coconut water, emergen 'c' formula, Gatorade, and other isotonic drinks help restore and balance electrolytes. Please drink some in the days leading up to your Iboga therapy.
Do not consume any antipsychotics or antidepressants or other psychoactive substances (such as MDMA or other drugs) for at least 2 weeks before your Iboga therapy.
If you are taking any prescription, or over-the-counter medication of any kind, (this includes any cold or allergy medication) please advise us at least 2 weeks beforehand as many medications negatively interact with Iboga and must be tapered down until they are no longer present in your system.
A decision regarding the tapering and discontinuation of any contraindicated medications must occur in consultation with a physician. If you cannot taper down or stop taking these substances (for reasons of safety or personal well-being) then you will be advised not to participate in Iboga therapy until it is safe for you to stop taking the medications.
Please advise us if you are taking herbs, herbal supplements, vitamins or other substances of any kind.
For substance using clients
Do not consume any alcohol for 5 days before your Iboga therapy. Do not consume any amphetamines such as methamphetamine (Speed/Crystal meth), methylphenidate (Ritalin), dextroamphetamine (Dexedrine), MDA, or MDMA (Ecstasy) for at least 2 weeks before your Iboga therapy.
For people who are opiate dependent
If you are taking methadone or any other long-acting opiate, it will be beneficial to try and switch to a short-acting opiate in the week before your Iboga therapy. Due to the greater difficulty in clearing long-acting opiates like methadone from your system, we recommend that you substitute for a shorter-acting opiate medication if possible. While Iboga is effective in greatly alleviating or attenuating the symptoms of withdrawal from heroin and short acting opiates, higher dosages of Iboga and more supplemental doses/boosters are typically required for methadone-using clients, which often leads to more challenging and difficult experiences as well as contributing to the expense and duration of the therapy session.
Do not binge before your therapy. Substance use prior to iboga therapy poses dangerous side effects which would make it unsuitable for you to participate in iboga detoxification.
If you are having urges to binge, please remind yourself that you are taking the first steps towards your recovery.
Take the time to honor and congratulate yourself for this!
If the urge becomes too much to handle, find a supportive friend or family member and ask them for support, or phone us at 805-468-4227 from the US or 2682-0192 from CR.
In addition, reducing your tolerance and dependence level by slowly and safely cutting or tapering down your usual dosage in the days leading up to your Iboga therapy will allow for a more comfortable and successful detoxification.
What to bring to the Costa Rica Yoga Spa
- Loose, comfortable clothing such as t-shirts and jogging pants
- A cozy sweater or two
- A rain jacket from May 15th to November 15th
- Solid comfortable shoes (good enough for small hikes or walks on the beach) and flip flops
- Toiletries: toothbrush, toothpaste, creams (no colognes, aftershaves or strong perfumes please - essential oils and lightly scented moisturizers are ok), razor (in a safe container), hairbrush or comb, contact lens fluid and case (if needed).
We provide: towels, body wash/soap, shampoo and conditioner, facecloths, facial masks, organc bug repellent, eye masks, earplugs, shower cap, hot water bottle, etc...
Feel free to bring small personal items, mementos, special or sacred objects.
Please contact us if you have any questions or special requests. We look forward to supporting you in your journey towards well-being and self-discovery!