Scientific & Clinical Evidence for Energy Medicine like EFT -
Dr Rangana Choudhuri, PhD Biochemistry, Oxford University
I recently attended an EFT workshop and one of the participants asked whether our genetic code, also known as DNA, can change for the better or worse. I spontaneously found myself putting my hand up and saying “Yes, there is evidence to show that DNA can change for the better or worse. The most well known piece of evidence comes from cancer research where DNA is known to mutate or change. The mutations can be caused by a range of different stimuli, for example toxic emotions, the external environment, radiation, diet and carcinogenic substances. These mutations can then result in cancer, illness and disease. There are also examples where mutations may occur and they do not manifest into a visible illness. Likewise, there is also evidence to suggest that positive thoughts, positive emotions and relaxation techniques can lead to positive changes in DNA”.
As a result of my answer I found 6 people came up to me after the workshop and asked me for more information and references. So I started to search for the exact reference. In my search I also came across Dawson Church’s thesis and 333 pages (!) of evidence for energy medicine.
In his thesis he cites lots of evidence for energy medicine. I was absolutely fascinated and decided to sign up for Dawson’s workshop in Ilkley in May.
Then I shared my findings for the evidence for energy medicine with EFT Master Gwyneth Moss. After our conversation she prompted me to write an article for the newsletter. So here I am writing an article on the Evidence for Energy Medicine. And this all started due to my hand going up in the air at an EFT workshop! My conscious intention to help fellow EFT enthusiasts manifesting in a sub-conscious way!
Evidence for energy medicine like EFT is based on ground-breaking work from Dr Candace Pert and Dr Deepak Chopra. Research has shown that when we suppress our emotions, our DNA mutates and these mutations can then lead to disease. Likewise, when we welcome and free our negative emotions and start to relax, our body, mind and spirit can naturally heal of its own accord.
Emotional healing like EFT can help us to gain freedom from our emotions, creating a foundation for health, healing and vitality. Dr Candace Pert, Research Professor at Georgetown University School of Medicine Washington DC, demonstrated that the mind is not confined to the brain. Instead, the mind is a “flow of information” moving between all cells, organs and systems of the body. This inturn implies the body is no longer separate from the mind and that the body is the mind. Furthermore, research has shown that within the body are a class of tiny proteins, called neuropeptides, and they are responsible for our emotions.
These neuropeptides are found within the body and the nervous system where they regulate our mood, behaviour and our health. Therefore, emotions and neuropeptides influence the body-mind and are critical to our health, vitality and well being.A scientific study conducted by the Heartmath Institute (www.heartmath.org) demonstrated that when study participants evoked strong positive emotions like love and appreciation, their DNA unwound and increased in length.
However, when these same individuals experienced strong negative emotions their DNA became shorter and in some cases their DNA codes were terminated. Interestingly, this process was reversed when the individuals switched back to experiencing strong positive emotions. The negative effect of environmental stresses and toxic emotions on our genetic code has also been demonstrated by American geneticist Barbara McClintock. Therefore, emotions influence our DNA and as our emotions change so does our DNA and positive emotions have a positive effect on our genetic blueprint.
This concept of changing our DNA with our emotions was also validated by Dr Bruce Lipton in “the Biology of Belief”. Dr Lipton combined his deep understanding of cell biology with human observation to demonstrate that our beliefs and thoughts can affect our cells and gene activity. In his book he describes the process by which we can change our DNA and hence cells.
In conclusion, change your beliefs, change your genetic make-up and live the life you want.
EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) can also come under the umbrella of Energy Psychology. Energy psychology applies principles and techniques for working with the body’s physical energies to facilitate desired changes in emotions, thoughts and behaviours. In the past five years there has been a series of reports published by Dr. Feinstein on the research conducted in this area. Below is an extract from www.energypsychologyinteractive.com.
The First Large-Scale Preliminary Clinical Trial of Energy Psychology
The largest study of energy psychology treatments to date was conducted over a 14-year period and involved some 31,400 patients. It was supervised by Dr. Andrade; who introduced energy psychology methods to 11 allied clinics in Argentina and Uruguay after he was trained in the approach in the United States.
Dr. Andrade had, as a young man, spent long periods of time in China, where he studied traditional acupuncture, and he had been applying it in his medical practice for thirty years. He was struck with the effectiveness of this new application, which focused directly on anxiety and other psychological disorders, and which did not use needles to stimulate the acupuncture points.
The staff of the 11 clinics met this new procedure with both interest and scepticism. While the group had no funding for research, they decided to track the outcomes of treatments with these new methods and compare them with the treatments currently in place. Standard record keeping already maintained a patient’s intake evaluation, the interventions used, and the treatment outcomes.
Dr. Andrade’s team added a simple procedure for briefly interviewing the patient, usually by telephone, at the close of treatment and then one month, three months, six months, and twelve months later. The interviewers had not been involved in the patient’s treatment. They had a record of the diagnosis and intake evaluation, but not of the treatment method. Their job was to determine if at the time of the interview the initial symptoms remained, had improved somewhat, or if the person was now symptom-free.
Over the 14-year period, 36 therapists were involved in treating the 29,000 patients whose progress was followed (even after the initial question of whether the energy interventions were effective had been answered to the satisfaction of the treatment staff, the follow-up calls were continued because they seemed to have clinical value, sometimes leading to further treatment).
The impressions of the interviewers, supported by the data they collected, were that the energy interventions were more effective than existing treatments for a range of conditions.
The clinics also conducted a number of sub-studies that allowed more precise conclusions. The overall investigation did not use a control group. A control group receives a different treatment, or no treatment, so there is a basis of comparison for the outcomes produced by the method being investigated. The sub-studies, however, did use control groups, comparing energy interventions with the methods that were already in use at the clinics. In the sub-studies, a “randomised design” (a standard for research that compares treatment modalities) was also employed, which means that any given patient had an equal chance of being placed in the group that received the energy therapy or being in the control group.
The largest of the sub-studies, conducted over a five-and-one-half year period, followed the course of treatment of approximately 5,000 patients diagnosed with anxiety disorders.
Half of them received energy therapy treatments and no medication. The other half received the standard treatment being used at the clinics for anxiety disorder, which was Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT), supplemented by medication as needed.
The interviews at the end of treatment, along with the follow-up interviews at 1, 3, 6, and 12 months, showed that the energy therapy was significantly more effective than the CBT/medication protocol in both the proportion of patients showing some improvement and the proportion of patients showing complete remission of symptoms.
Outcome Comparisons with 5,000 Anxiety Patients at Close of Therapy
Some Improvement: CBT/Medication=63% / Energy Therapy=90%
Complete Remission of Symptoms: CBT/Medication=51% / Energy Therapy 76.00%
Direct Evidence for EFT
Steve Wells published a controlled study in 2003 in the Journal of Clinical Psychology on the use of EFT on Phobias. The study participants had been clinically diagnosed as having phobias to small animals such as bats, spiders, rats and snakes. The participants received one 30 minute explanation of EFT and one session.
After the session all subjects experienced a dramatic drop in fear which was measured by questionnaires, pulse rate and walking toward the animal they feared. The study also found that after 6 months the subjects had a much lower phobia reaction to the animal they feared.
In conclusion, there is a body of evidence for energy medicine and its positive effects on people, cells and DNA. Science aside, the important point is that energy medicine works. The best way to convince people about the benefits of energy medicine is to give them a direct experience.
As I came from a scientific background I was very sceptical of energy medicine and I only converted once I experienced my own transformation. By all means use the science available to help you promote EFT and also offer demonstrations to give people a direct experience.
The UK government has recently provided £175m to educational institutions to train NHS professionals in cognitive therapy. Even if 10% of the £175m could be devoted to energy medicine the positive effects will be dramatic, based on the largest energy psychology. Happy tapping!
Chopra, D. 1989 Quantum Healing
Dawson, C 2005 Quantum Medicine
Lipton, B. 2005 The Biology of Belief
Pert, C. 1999 Molecules of Emotion
What The Bleep Do We Know? 2005 DVD
Dr Rangana Choudhuri acknowledges Ranjana Appoo, www.emotionalhealthcentre.com for providing the summary on energy psychology, Dr Dawson Church for his thesis on quantum medicine, Gwyneth Moss for all her guidance and wisdom and Pete for reviewing this article.