Along with thousands of case studies over the past 30 years showing that EFT Tapping works, and millions of people now estimated to be benefiting from it, around 100 research studies have now also been conducted. Fifty-one of these studies are gold standard research studies (RCTs).

Already in the year 2000, Harvard researcher Eric Leskowitz found that tapping acupoints signals your brain's fear centre (amygdala) to dial down your response to stress and pain (see Leskowitz 2018). An Australian-led study on the use of EFT to reduce food cravings published the world's first fMRI scans visually showing "before-and-after" images of tapping calming the brain (Stapleton, Buchan, Mitchell et al 2018; free download of the paper here).

EFT can also be used to clear or neutralise troubling memories or traumas by processing unresolved emotions associated with that event, so that you are just left with a factual memory. We have been led to believe we have to suffer forever, but EFT gently and effectively brings relief.

A recent paper (Feinstein 2019) reviews the most salient criticisms of the EFT method and presents research and empirically based theoretical constructs that address them. Feinstein concludes that a growing body of evidence indicates that EFT protocols are rapid and effective in producing beneficial outcomes in the treatment of anxiety, depression, PTSD, and possibly other conditions, and also proposes the mechanisms by which acupoint tapping might bring about these outcomes (read on open access here). Dr Peta Stapleton's 2019 book The Science Behind Tapping claims that EFT demonstrates strong efficacy, unusual speed, and special strengths in facilitating targeted shifts in our neural pathways.

Research about EFT


Church and David (2019) looked at the use of EFT to improve employee well-being in business executives attending a daylong group seminar. At the end of the day, symptoms of pain had reduced by 41%, food and drink cravings by 50%, and anxiety and depression had declined by 34%.


An RCT by Jones, Thornton and Andrews (2011) found that a 45min EFT tapping session was a quick and effective treatment to significantly reduce public speaking anxiety in the participants.


Rogers and Seers (2015) showed that a 20min EFT group session quickly reduced stress in 26 university students, compared to 30 students receiving stimulation of sham points. The EFT group's stress feelings were reduced by 39% (as compared to 8% in the sham-point group).


An RCT in 2012 study with 83 participants showed EFT significantly decreasing cortisol levels by 24% and statistically significant improvements in other symptoms such as anxiety (Church, Yount & Brooks 2012)

Tedx Talk - The Effectiveness of EFT Tapping

Changes in the Brain with EFT

©Alina Grubnyak

A pilot randomised clinical trial by Peta Stapleton visually showed the effects in fMRI scans of Emotional Freedom Techniques dialling down brain activation in response to food cravings.

Dec 2018

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