A recent study looked at the ability of Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) to impact central nervous system responses by looking at various changes in physiological markers. EFT is an evidence-based therapeutic method that has been documented in over 100 studies, and shown as effective. It is used primarily in a clinical setting for anxiety, depression and certain types of trauma. It can be taught to patients and clients and used as a self-help tool. The current study looked to further elucidate EFTs mechanism of action through modulation of the central nervous system by measuring heart rate variability (HRV) and heart coherence (HC). It also looked at the effects on the circulatory system, the endocrine system and the immune system by measuring resting heart rate (RHR), blood pressure (BP), cortisol and salivary immunoglobulin A (SigA). Psychological symptoms were a secondary aim to measure.
EFT training workshop
A test group of 203 individuals were enrolled in a 4-day training workshop to learn EFT. Measurements and surveys indicated a significant decrease in anxiety, depression, PTSD, pain, cravings as well as increased happiness scores. Immune system markers were seen to increase, as well as improvements in RHR, and a decrease in cortisol. Blood pressure was also observed to lower with EFT and positive trends were seen for HRV and HC at post-test.
Conclusion of the study
The overall conclusion of the study was that EFT shows positive health effects – physiologic effects – as well as increased mental well-being.
What is Emotional Freedom Technique?
EFT is a manualized method that can be used clinically, or taught to clients/patients for at home use. It is a brief intervention that utilizes exposure, cognitive therapy, and somatic stimulation of acupressure points on the body and face. The method asks an individual to identify a problem thought, fear, emotion, or situation and rate their level of distress. Then a statement is generated from the “problem” into a “setup statement,” which helps facilitate the healing of the “problem.” This statement is usually stated as “even though I have this problem, or fear, I deeply and completely accept myself/ love myself.” The individual then repeats this statement as they conduct a series of light tapping on various acupressure points on the face and body. At the end of the tapping individuals are asked to re-rate their distress.
Razi Berry is the founder and publisher of the journal Naturopathic Doctor News & Review that has been in print since 2005 and the premier consumer-faced website of naturopathic medicine, NaturalPath. She is the host of The Natural Cancer Prevention Summit and The Heart Revolution-Heal, Empower and Follow Your Heart, and the popular 10 week Sugar Free Summer program. From a near death experience as a young girl that healed her failing heart, to later overcoming infertility, chronic fatigue syndrome, and fibromyalgia through naturopathic medicine, Razi has lived the mind/body healing paradigm. Her projects uniquely capture the tradition and philosophy of naturopathy: The healing power of nature, the vital life force in every living thing and the undeniable role that science and mind/body medicine have in creating health and overcoming dis-ease. Follow Razi on Facebook at Razi Berry and join us at Love is Medicine to explore the convergence of love and health.