Sanango Dieta2019-07-21T05:49:38-05:00


Experience The Pinnacle of Amazonian Shamanism

The Uchu Sanango Dieta is a pinnacle experience of Amazonian Shamanism. Its capacity to bring physical, emotional and psychological healing is unmatched among Amazonian plant medicines. It has a very high-vibration medicine that is considered more powerful and transformative than ayahuasca. Because of this, there are very few true Sanangueros that exist today and Maestro Alberto is one of them.
During this retreat we will utilize the dieta in conjunction with ayahuasca to elicit profound personal growth and change. The opportunity to participate in a traditional diet with a Maestro Curandero of Don Alberto’s caliber is an extraordinary opportunity not only to cleanse your body and awaken your spirit, but to liberate what is truly in your heart while learning from two master plant teachers.
The Sanango dieta consists of following the methods of a traditional dieta that includes a limited food intake and specific behavioral restrictions (more information on this below). These methods are time-tested ways of facilitating the most effective and impactful experience possible. All participants follow the diet together. This method of working with plant medicines helps generate a cohesive spirit of community that carries the collective energy forward. We recommend reading the information on this page carefully so that you are aware of what you are committing to upon commencement of the dieta.


Sanango medicine moves into the deepest parts of the psyche, body and emotions to help bring resolution to deep, core issues. One of Sanango’s main teachings is about living a life of integrity, from your heart and essence. During the retreat we will explore what this means in the context of one’s life and how to cultivate the shifts the dieta brings into direct and meaningful changes. The result of this process is a cleansed body and mind with a renewed spirit that is ready to embody one’s path of heart and truth.
Sanango Dieta Medicine Spirit at Blue Morpho Ayahuasca Center

Sanango Medicine Spirit

Don Alberto Preparing Sanango at Blue Morpho Ayahuasca Retreat Center

Maestro Alberto Preparing Sanango

As part of Blue Morpho’s initiatory approach with plant medicines, we offer experiential retreats that are rooted in Amazonian shamanism that successfully merge Western perspectives with the traditional lineage of Maestro Alberto. The Sanango Dieta is a unique and powerful way to deepen your exploration of not only Amazonian shamanism and plant medicine, but a committed way of exploring yourself and the changes you want to make with profound, lasting impact.
Due to the nature of the Sanango dieta experience, we only offer this retreat once or twice per year with a limited number of participants. If you are serious about taking the next step in your evolution with Sanango, we recommend that you plan your journey ahead of time based on availability.


  • Guidance in traditional Sanango dieta methods
  • Three Sanango medicine ceremonies
  • Two ayahuasca medicine ceremonies
  • Personalized shamanic care
  • Guided and meditative jungle walks
  • Identifying and learning how the plant teachers can help guide you
  • Group discussions
  • Gentle yoga and/or breath work
  • Learn how to build lasting connections with the plant spirits
  • Integration skills and practices for continuing the journey at home
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Sanango’s head medicine spirit presents itself in the form of an elder, wise-looking man, affectionately referred to as Abuelo Sanango. He is known traditionally to be a direct, firm and compassionate teacher. People often report how much care they feel from Sanango, both during the dieta and for years after the experience.
Sanango medicine is incredibly potent for making long-lasting, real-life changes. The movement of the dieta is likened to a glacier: slow but steady and not stopping for anything. As it moves through your system, it transforms your internal landscape into one aligned with your truth and integrity. Thoughts, desires, beliefs and ways of being that are not in alignment are methodically removed, just like a glacier steadily pushing through anything in its path. The result is a newly transformed being with the strength to stand in the truth of one’s essence as a human being.


Uchu Sanango comes from the Apocynaceae family of plants, commonly known as the “dogbane” family. Scientifically classified as Tabernaemontana sananho, Sanango is referred to by many different names across the northern Amazonian region. It is used locally to treat a variety of conditions, including stomach parasites, arthritis, rheumatism, colds and syphilis. It can be utilized as a purgative, soporific, has anti-bacterial as well as anti-inflammatory properties. Generally, Uchu Sanango is an excellent medicine for the joints, skeletal and musculature systems.
During the dieta, Sanango is felt in nearly all bodily systems, with a primary emphasis on the nervous system, as well as the bones, joints and muscles. “Uchu” refers to the spicy aspect of Sanango, causing the body temperature to rise, perspire heavily and exhibit fever-like symptoms. Its effect can also be felt in the vision, leading to blurry or impaired sight. The combination of these effects sometimes reduces one’s ability to walk or coordinate movements. Hence, a good portion of the dieta is spent resting and is typically accompanied by a monumental digestive system cleanse.
Sanango Dieta Medicine at Blue Morpho Shamanic Retreat Center


The Sanango dieta requires the full commitment from the participant. The dieta comes in two phases, the first of which takes place during the retreat, and the second continues afterwards. One of the most significant elements of the dieta experience is keeping to the requirements during the retreat as well as maintaining the behavioral and dietary requirements that follow. This part of the journey is fundamental to allowing the plant spirits and their medicine to fully integrate into your body, mind and spirit. Your learning will continue during this time, and far beyond it. This is truly a remarkable, life-changing experience unlike no other. Sanango dieta are rigorous, so please ensure that you are committed to the whole process.


The dieta is first and foremost a physical process. It consists of drinking the inner bark of the taproot of the Sanango tree for three consecutive nights while following the traditional dieta. The Sanango-infused solution is made by adding water to the root scrapings and allowing them to sit for several hours. That solution is filtered through cheesecloth and is consumed at 3:00 a.m.
The drink is hot and spicy and can cause vomiting and diarrhea. Around 20 to 30 minutes after ingesting Sanango the visionary effects can begin, though some may not feel the effects for several hours after consumption. The journey can last up to 8 hours with mild visions and very strong corporeal sensations. Some people express difficulty with seeing straight or with equilibrium the day after the ceremony. It is also common to experience a very high-vibration buzzing coursing through your body. All of these effects are ways that Sanango medicine aligns energies.
The dieta meal is very bland yet clean: one type of small river fish, green plantains and a manioc-based drink called fariña. Meals are served twice per day. When the Sanango diet is lifted, we will resume eating regular meals that are suitable for the subsequent ayahuasca ceremonies.


The dieta has several key components, all of which are critical to its safe and proper functioning.  These components come from traditional methods that ensure an optimum physical, mental, emotional and spiritual environment for the plant medicine to cleanly absorb, take root and blossom within you. These restrictions are part of the purification process and must be maintained during the retreat:
  • A limited and carefully selected food intake for a set period of time
  • No caffeine, no salt, sugar, or oils
  • Only bland foods are offered: plantains, yucca meal, and one type of fish
  • No hygiene products: soap, cosmetics, toothpaste, bug spray, sunscreen, etc.
  • No western medications including contraceptive pills and malaria tablets
  • Staying on the camp premises
  • Avoiding direct physical contact with others (except the shamans and assistants)
  • It is recommended to stay in the shade and out of direct sun light
  • No taking part in physically strenuous activity
  • No overly-stimulating input like loud music, media or entertainment consumption
  • No sexual activity of any kind (including masturbation and fantasizing)


After the retreat finishes, some of the previous restrictions will be lifted and some will continue for periods of time afterwards. This second phase of the dieta is the most important part. This is the time when Sanango matures within you. Adherence to these post-dieta restrictions is imperative in order to successfully complete the dieta. These restrictions include:
  • No sex for 30 days (including masturbation, pornography and fantasizing)
  • No alcohol for 30 days
  • No Western street drugs for 30 days (includes other sacred plants)
  • No pork, alligator, piranha, shark, duck, rabbit, deer or other aggressive and/or skittish meats for 6 months
Sanango Medicine Plant at Blue Morpho Ayahuasca Center

Uchu Sanango Flowers

Preparing Sanango Dieta Roots at Blue Morpho Ayahuasca Retreat Center

Sanango Roots


Sanango is unmatched in its capacity to foster physical, mental and emotional healing, as well as spiritual growth, learning, and personal transformation. The learning is direct, experiential, and unique to each individual. Throughout the week, the retreat focuses on forming meaningful relationships with the plant spirits, both in and out of ceremony. These bonds deepen within you as your dieta takes root and blossoms. As you offer the plant spirits your time, energy, dedication and focus during the dieta, in exchange they offer their medicine and wisdom.
The result of a completed dieta is a continuous evolutionary journey that can last for your entire life. It is important that each person understand the commitment required. This commitment hinges upon following the dieta restrictions. Not following these rules can bring physical, psychological and emotional affliction by traditional definitions. This is not meant to produce any fear about the diet. On the contrary, sticking with the process is simple, direct, and can lead to some of the most meaningful spiritual relationships that one can have.

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Dates Price From Availability Register
Please note that due to the advanced nature of this program, we only offer Sanango dieta retreats once or twice each year.


Arrive at Blue Morpho’s office, meet and greet

Bus trip to our Shamanic Retreat Center

Welcoming talks


Pre-Sanango discussion

Prepare the Sanango roots for ceremony

Dinner – last meal before the dieta!


3 a.m. wake-up call

1st Sanango Ceremony


Group discussion


Time to rest and integrate

Sanango roots preparation

Hot fariña for dinner


3 a.m. wake-up call

2nd Sanango Ceremony

Breakfast followed by a group discussion


Time to rest and integrate

Sanango roots preparation

Hot fariña for dinner


3 a.m. wake-up call

3rd and final Sanango Ceremony

Breakfast followed by a group discussion


Time to rest and integrate

Hot fariña for dinner



Group Discussion


Time to rest and integrate

1st Ayahuasca Ceremony


Breakfast followed by a group discussion

Gentle yoga session


Group discussion on Ayahuasca and the dieta process

Time to rest and integrate

2nd Ayahuasca Ceremony


Salt: concluding the first stage of the dieta

Normal breakfast followed by a group discussion


Going home discussion on integration and beyond

Group photo

Bus ride back to Iquitos

This is a sample retreat itinerary. Actual program schedules vary.

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During Sanango dietas, normal meals will be served on the first day of the retreat at lunch and dinner, and again on the last two days of the retreat after the dieta is lifted. A normal breakfast is available on the final morning. All other meals follow the requirements of a traditional dieta.


All meals are made fresh in a licensed kitchen and served in the dining hall. The non-dieta menu is a traditional selection of savory, fresh local ingredients prepared by local chefs and staff specially trained to create nutritious ayahuasca-safe meals. A fusion of the regional Peruvian and international cuisine, this includes a variety of salads, fresh vegetables, fish, and chicken dishes.
Personal nutritional restrictions can be accommodated for, within the boundaries of shamanism and the limits of food variety and availability in Iquitos. This includes gluten-free, ovo-lacto, vegetarian and vegan diets. Please make your specialty diet requests at the time of booking.
Only high-quality filtered water is used in cooking and for drinking
Hot water is available in common areas for making hot beverages
Filtered drinking water, limes, a selection of herbal teas and coffee substitutes will be available on non-dieta days
Juices are made fresh from sugar-free fruit (Camu Camu, Cocona and Maracuya), making them safe to consume as part of the ayahuasca diet on non-dieta days


No added sugar or available sugar products (jam, etc.)
No alcohol used in cooking or allowed in camp
No pork products
No red meat
All dieta meals are cooked plain, without the use of any oils, salt, sugars, spices or additives. The foods offered are bland, as is custom with the diet in order to help purify your body and facilitate the connection with the plants. Dieta meals are plate-served rather than buffet-style, like our normal meals.
BREAKFAST: Boiled green plantains, grilled sardines, and a hot drink made with manioc root called fariña.
LUNCH: A plain cooked river fish called boquichico. Served with plain grilled plantains with hot fariña available throughout the day.
DINNER: During a traditional dieta, there are only two meals served. We will have a fresh batch of hot fariña
available for dieters each night during the dieta for dinner.


BREAKFAST: A selection of eggs, breads, fresh cold and hot vegetables, and local juices accompanied by tea and other hot beverages.
LUNCH: The largest meal in the jungle, lunch is a combination of salad, fish and chicken dishes, rice, quinoa, beans, plantains or yucca, and potatoes. Beverages include water, tea, and specially-selected local juices.
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Blue Morpho is located outside of Iquitos, Peru. All international flights first transit through Lima, from where you will need to take a domestic flight to Iquitos. It is best to arrive the day before the retreat starts. We advise you to take out travel insurance in case you encounter any complications prior to, during or after the retreat. As part of the booking process, you will be sent a “Journey Guide” that includes comprehensive material about your trip to Blue Morpho, travel, arrival and preparation.
For additional information on traveling to Iquitos, recommended items to bring, suggestions for places to stay and other useful tips, please visit our travel information page.
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Safety is our number one priority. In some cases, drinking ayahuasca is not appropriate for individuals who have certain mental or physical health conditions, or are taking medications that are potentially dangerous to consume with ayahuasca. In all cases, we meticulously screen potential guests for medical history, prior and current medications and supplements, and overall health and well-being to determine suitability for participating in our programs. Blue Morpho reserves the right to refuse admission or to refrain from administering ayahuasca or other sacred plant medicines if we deem it unsafe. To see the health and medical sections on our application form, please click one of the “register now” links in the calendar above or on our retreat booking page.


Payments are refundable if you give Blue Morpho admin at least 60 days’ notice in writing that you will not attend the retreat you signed up for. However, there is an administrative cost to cover bank transaction fees of 10% of amount paid. Alternatively, if you cannot attend your retreat and have given us the 60 days’ notice, you may transfer your payment to a different retreat within the following 12 months at no charge (for the first transfer; any additional transfers can be made with an admin fee of $50). If you elect to transfer your payment, this cannot later be refunded. If you cancel your retreat and do not at time of cancellation request a refund or transfer, then the payment cannot later be refunded. For this reason we strongly recommend you take out comprehensive travel insurance that will cover any financial losses should you have to cancel your visit within 60 days for any reason.


The ingestion of ayahuasca and other sacred plants requires participants to follow certain dietary and behavioral restrictions. These restrictions are necessary to optimize your safety, health, and the efficacy of the process. You will be notified of these restrictions in detail on the first day of the retreat, to which your agreement is required to participate. These restrictions include but are not limited to: limited intake of sugar or anything that tastes sweet; consumption of alcohol and street drugs is strictly forbidden during the retreat and for 7 days after your last intake of ayahuasca (this includes other sacred plants not part of the retreat program); consumption of pork or pork products is not allowed during the entire retreat and for 30 days after your last intake of ayahuasca; sexual activity of any kind is not permitted whatsoever between guests and/or staff during a retreat and for at least 3 days after (this includes couples).
The nature of the environment demands adherence to these dietary and behavioral restrictions, which are based on traditional plant spirit medicine. They support the proper and safe functioning of ayahuasca and the entire retreat process. Non-adherence to these restrictions can result in potentially serious consequences that include physical, emotional, mental and spiritual affliction. We strive to maintain the safest environment possible for participants to not only experience ayahuasca, but to get the most out of the experience that they can. Following these restrictions is paramount to making this happen. It is not important for participants to understand this completely, but it is mandatory that they observe the rules.
Please note that the dietary restrictions for Sanango dietas (as indicated here) and shamanic plant dietas are specific to each program. You can visit the corresponding pages for the dietary specifications required for these retreats. If you would like clarification on any of the information provided here, please email us directly at
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Blue Morpho blends traditional Amazonian shamanism, ayahuasca and professional expertise in facilitation into an all-inclusive retreat that offers unique and life-changing experiences. We provide a safe, supportive space that facilitates personal growth and healing, holistic transformation, and spiritual evolution. With a genuine dedication and love for this work, we help participants discover their reasons for coming to ayahuasca, guide the process of bringing resolution to these reasons, and prepare participants to leave equipped with tools to integrate their experience into practical, progressive change. This mission has been and will always be Blue Morpho’s primary goal. Having already welcomed over 5,000 satisfied guests to our center, it is what inspires us to continue being one of the best ayahuasca retreats in Peru.
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