EFT: Emotional Freedom Technique or “Tapping”

Introduction to Tapping:

Overview of EFT Research:

David Feinstein, “Energy Psychology: Efficacy, Speed, Mechanisms,”  Explore: The Journal of Science and Healing, 2018.
This paper reviews the most salient criticisms of EFT—energy psychology acupoint tapping—and presents research and empirically based theoretical constructs that address them. More than 100 peer-reviewed outcome studies—51 of which are randomized controlled trials—provide an evidential base for evaluating the claims and criticisms surrounding the approach. This review concludes that a growing body of evidence indicates that acupoint-based energy psychology protocols are rapid and effective in producing beneficial outcomes in the treatment of anxiety, depression, PTSD, and possibly other conditions. Mechanisms by which acupoint tapping might bring about these treatment outcomes are also proposed.
This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license. 

EFT significantly reduces cortisol levels: Several studies have measured cortisol in participants before and after EFT tapping. One landmark randomized controlled trial compared an hour-long EFT session with an hour of talk therapy. It found that anxiety and depression dropped twice as much with EFT and that cortisol declined by 24% in just a single hour (Church, Yount & Brooks, 2012). Another found that participants enrolled at a Clinical EFT workshop had a 49% reduction in baseline cortisol between the start and end of the program (Bach et al., 2016). Most recently, (Stapleton P, Crighton G, Sabot D, O’Neill HM, 2020) found cortisol dropped 43% in a one-hour group session. In the comparison groups for the study, cortisol dropped by 19% from group psycho-education, and rose 2% for this waitlist group. See graphic below.


April 2021: Boosting Immunity

February 2021: Stress & Cortisol—Befriending Stress

December 2020: Food cravings, Calm nervous system, Anti-racism

Additional Resources

Staying in the window of tolerance with trauma: Hunt, Andy. “The Road of Fire and Ice.” While EFT is a highly accessible, valuable self-help tool, Hunt describes the value of using a trained practitioner to guide individuals through trauma.