Call or text (+44) 07887 617558

EFT for Addictions

Below is a selection of abstracts (summaries) of research articles on EFT for addictions, cravings and weight issues.

For further research on other topics, follow the links below:
- EFT for Trauma and Post Traumatic Stress
- EFT for Depression
- EFT for Anxiety, Phobias and Stress
- EFT for Pain and Physical Issues
- EFT for Sports Performance

 

Stapleton, P., Sheldon, T., Porter, B., Whitty, J. (2011). A randomized clinical trial of a meridian-based intervention for food cravings with six month follow-up. Behavior Change, 28(1), 1-16.

This randomised, clinical trial tested whether The Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) reduced food cravings. This study involved 96 overweight or obese adults who were allocated to the EFT treatment or 4-week waitlist condition. Degree of food craving, perceived power of food, restraint capabilities and psychological symptoms were assessed pre- and post- a 4-week treatment program (mixed method ANOVA comparative analysis), and at 6-month follow-up (repeated measure ANOVA with group data collapsed). EFT was associated with a significantly greater improvement in food cravings, the subjective power of food and craving restraint than waitlist from pre- to immediately post-test (p < .05). Across collapsed groups, an improvement in food cravings and the subjective power of food after active EFT treatment was maintained at 6 months, and a delayed effect was seen for craving restraint. Although there was a significant reduction in measures of psychological distress immediately after treatment (p < .05), there was no between-group difference. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that EFT can have an immediate effect on reducing food cravings and can result in maintaining reduced cravings over time.

 

Stapleton, P., Sheldon, T., & Porter, B. (2012). Clinical benefits of Emotional Freedom Techniques on food cravings at 12-months follow-up: A randomized controlled trial. Energy Psychology: Theory, Research, & Treatment, 4(1), 13-24.

This randomized, single-blind, crossover trial tested whether participants who used Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) maintained reduced food cravings after 12-months and updates previously reported 6-month findings. Ninety-six overweight/obese adults were allocated to a 4-week EFT treatment or waitlist condition. Degree of food craving, perceived power of food, restraint capabilities, and psychological symptoms were assessed pre- and posttest and at 12-month follow-up for collapsed groups. Significant improvements occurred in weight, body mass index, food cravings, subjective power of food, craving restraint, and psychological coping for EFT participants from pretest to 12 months (p < .05). It appears EFT can result in participants maintaining reduced cravings over time and affect weight and BMI in overweight and obese individuals.

 

Church, D., & Brooks, A. J. (2013). The effect of EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) on psychological symptoms in addiction treatment: A pilot study. Journal of Scientific Research and Reports, 2(2).

Objective: Studies have found a frequent co-occurrence of psychological symptoms such as anxiety and depression with addiction. This pilot study examined the effect of EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques), a widely practiced form of energy psychology, on 39 adults self-identified with addiction issues attending an EFT weekend workshop targeting addiction.

Measures: Subjects completed the SA-45, a well-validated questionnaire measuring psychological distress. It has two global scales assessing intensity and breadth of psychological symptoms and 9 symptom subscales including anxiety and depression. The SA-45 was administered before and after the workshop. Twenty-eight participants completed a 90-day follow-up.

Results: A statistically significant decrease was observed in the two global scales and all but one of the SA-45 subscales after the workshop, indicating a reduction in psychological distress (positive symptom total -38%, P<.000). Improvements on intensity and breadth of psychological symptoms, and anxiety and obsessive-compulsive subscales were maintained at the 90-day follow-up (P<.001).

Conclusion: These findings are consistent with those noted in studies of other populations, and suggest that EFT may be an effective adjunct to addiction treatment by reducing the severity of general psychological distress. Limitations of this study include a small sample size, lack of a control or comparison group, and attrition between primary and follow-up data points.

 

Church, D., & Brooks, A. J. (2010). The effect of a brief EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) self-intervention on anxiety, depression, pain and cravings in healthcare workers. Integrative Medicine: A Clinician's Journal, Oct/Nov, 40-44.

This study examined whether self-intervention with Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT), a brief exposure therapy that combines a cognitive and a somatic element, had an effect on healthcare workers’ psychological distress symptoms. Participants were 216 attendees at 5 professional conferences. Psychological distress, as measured by the SA-45, and self-rated pain, emotional distress, and craving were assessed before and after 2-hours of self-applied EFT, utilizing a within-subjects design. A 90-day follow-up was completed by 53% of the sample with 61% reporting using EFT subsequent to the workshop. Significant improvements were found on all distress subscales and ratings of pain, emotional distress, and cravings at posttest (all p<.001). Gains were maintained at follow-up for most SA-45 scales. The severity of psychological symptoms was reduced (-45%, p<.001) as well as the breadth (-40%, p<.001), with significant gains maintained at follow-up. Greater subsequent EFT use correlated with a greater decrease in symptom severity at follow-up (p<.034, r=.199), but not in breadth of symptoms (p<.0117, r=.148). EFT provided an immediate effect on psychological distress, pain, and cravings that was replicated across multiple conferences and healthcare provider samples.

 

Perlman, A.(2012). Evidence and Potential Mechanisms for Mindfulness Practices and Energy Psychology for Obesity and Binge-Eating Disorder. Explore: The Journal of Science and Healing, 8(5), 271-276.

Obesity is a growing epidemic. Chronic stress produces endocrine and immune factors that are contributors to obesity's etiology. These biochemicals also can affect appetite and eating behaviors that can lead to binge-eating disorder. The inadequacies of standard care and the problem of patient noncompliance have inspired a search for alternative treatments. Proposals in the literature have called for combination therapies involving behavioral or new biological therapies. This manuscript suggests that mind−body interventions would be ideal for such combinations. Two mind−body modalities, energy psychology and mindfulness meditation, are reviewed for their potential in treating weight loss, stress, and behavior modification related to binge-eating disorder. Whereas mindfulness meditation and practices show more compelling evidence, energy psychology, in the infancy stages of elucidation, exhibits initially promising outcomes but requires further evidence-based trials.

Further resources

For further research on other topics, follow the links below:
- EFT for Trauma and Post Traumatic Stress
- EFT for Depression
- EFT for Anxiety, Phobias and Stress
- EFT for Pain and Physical Issues
- EFT for Sports Performance