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Is EFT a Potent Treatment For Influencing Gene Expression?

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Is EFT a Potent Treatment for Influencing Gene Expression?

by David MacKay

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

SANTA ROSA, CA. A paper published in the Review of General Psychology, a journal of the American Psychological Association, suggested that:

  1. Effective psychotherapies turn on or turn off the expression of genes that underlie psychological conditions and psychological health; and
  2. Energy Psychology, including EFT, is among the most potent and precise therapies available for influencing gene expression.

Written by David Feinstein, PhD and Dawson Church, PhD, the paper appeared in one of the Energy Psychology Journal issues. The abstract is available in the research bibliography on this website.

A particular class of genes of great interest to biologists, because they turn on in three seconds or less, is the IEGs or Immediate Early Genes. These are the stress genes, the ones that contain the blueprints that allow our bodies to produce stress hormones like adrenaline and cortisol. They turn on quickly because an effective response to danger is essential to an organism’s survival.

But if they’re turned on repeatedly, for instance by filling our minds with stressful thoughts, or re-playing unresolved childhood traumas, the overproduction of those stress hormones robs our body of the precursors required for cell repair and other beneficial biological functions.

In their groundbreaking paper, David Feinstein and Dawson Church explain how EFT and other forms of energy psychology reduce the emotional intensity of traumatic memories, and thus reduce their biological impact as well, silencing stress genes.

One of the most graphic portrayals of the effects of stress comes from studies of identical twins. They’re born with exactly the same genes, and when scientists look at gene maps of their chromosomes at the age of 2 or 3 they’re indistinguishable. Yet by the age of 50 their patterns of gene expression can be very different, if one is more stressed than the other.

Below are some faces of identical twins, showing how they diverge over time.

At the age of 10, identical twins might still look very much alike.

By the age of 30 or 40, stress and other epigenetic factors change their patterns of gene expression.

And by the age of 50 or 60, their biological age can differ by as much as 10 years.

 

The yellow areas of these chromosomes indicate similar DNA expression patterns in identical twins. At the age of 3, they’re very similar, but by the age of 50, they differ markedly, due primarily to the epigenetic effects of stress.

EFT makes a great contribution by reducing those stresses, and returning the body to a calm baseline. In chapter 11 of The Genie in Your Genes, Dawson Church describes many scientific studies that demonstrate how emotions affect genes, and in chapter 13, the studies showing the effects of EFT on reducing stress.

This paper being published in Review of General Psychology presents the evidence for the stress-reducing genetic effects of energy psychology in scholarly form. These proposed mechanisms of action of EFT have led to a new study examining gene expression after 10 sessions of EFT, as well as one determining if cortisol levels are affected by a single EFT session.

Help for Haitian Orphans with PTSD

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Help for Haitian Orphans With PTSD

SANTA ROSA, CA. January 12, 2011 was the first anniversary of the deadly earthquake that left Haiti devastated.

One little-noticed aspect of the tragedy that left 320,000 people injured and more than a million homeless is that many children have been orphaned.

Haitian government officials estimate their number at over 225,000.

Already living in one of the world’s poorest countries, they had to learn to cope with a devastated economy and ecology without the benefit of whatever help their parents might have been able to provide.

The experience of neglect, hunger, and homelessness can damage the mental health of these children as much as their bodies. Even before the earthquake, many suffered from posttraumatic stress disorder or PTSD, according to a report by Canadian psychiatrist Nicole Desrosiers.

The former Prime Minister of Haiti, Michelle Pierre, sums up Haiti’s history as: “dictatorship, persecution, deprivation, and repeated natural disasters.” “The polytrauma and psychiatric emergency presented by the Haitian people is one of the most severe ever known anywhere in the world,” says psychologist Cécile Allegra in the documentary “The Wound of the Soul.”

Some psychologists estimate that as much as 90% of the population may be affected by PTSD.

A group of mental health volunteers from Europe and the US went to Haiti offering free training to staff and volunteers at ten sites in Haiti. Encouraged by research studies showing large improvements in PTSD after treatment with EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques), this group decided to offer assistance to Haitian orphans by training 275 caregivers. EFT is easily learned, and works very quickly to dampen the emotional impact of traumatic memories. It combines acupressure with mental recall of a traumatic experience.

Jean-Michel Gurret, a certified French EFT trainer, taught EFT at two orphanages in 2011. He serves on the board of Energy Psychology Without Borders (EPSYSF), which organized the trip. “Some of the children we have seen here have witnessed horrors beyond my imagining,” he says, “and without EFT, I would feel helpless. Yet I have seen many of them improving quickly, again starting to laugh and play like the children they are, once they are free of the emotional grip of their previous.”

The group hopes that by training those who care for orphans, they will multiply their efforts, and have at least some impact on Haiti’s epidemic of PTSD.

Dream to Freedom

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Dream to Freedom

Brain States and the Psychology of Dreams

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – July 1, 2013

Energy Psychology Press

SANTA ROSA, CA. When we are asleep, parts of the brain that govern our waking life shut down, but many other parts of the brain remain switched on. One brain region very active when we are dreaming is called the visual association cortex, which is located at the rear of the head. It makes meaning out of what we see, and engages the brain’s emotional centers, which is why dreams are often laden with emotion.

In a new book called Dream to Freedom, authors Robert and Lynne Hoss describe the many processes occurring in the dreaming brain, and how they relate to the unconscious mind. Dreams often involve distorted versions of waking events and behaviors, and can represent an attempt by the brain to resolve these dilemmas emotionally.

Robert Hoss is the president of DreamScience, and one of the world’s foremost authorities on dreamwork and Gestalt psychology. Lynne Hoss is a psychotherapist.

In the book, the authors show that understanding our dreams does not necessarily decrease negative emotion. They present a new psychological protocol called “Dream to Freedom” based on EFT or Emotional Freedom Techniques, an “evidence-based” therapy method.

The Dream to Freedom technique is designed to reduce the emotional stress that can accompany dreams by combining EFT with Gestalt dreamwork. EFT has been validated in many studies of anxiety and other mood disorders. The authors present many case histories in which the Dream to Freedom technique has allowed dreamers to resolve the emotional dilemmas presented by their dreams, as well as facilitate lucid dreaming and stop recurring nightmares.

REFERENCES

Book: Dream to Freedom on Amazon

To schedule an interview with Robert and Lynne Hoss, please email EFT Universe.

Study finds EFT Reduces Food Cravings and Weight Loss

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Study finds EFT Reduces Food Cravings and Weight Loss

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – June 28, 2012

Foundation for Epigenetic Medicine

SANTA ROSA, CA. Recent research offers heartening results for those who have been trying without success to lose weight. A simple method called Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT), also known as “tapping,” can reduce food cravings, clear emotional issues associated with food and weight, and help the individual shed unwanted pounds.

In a randomized controlled trial of 96 overweight or obese people, performed at Griffith University in Australia, and published in the peer-reviewed journal Energy Psychology, participants received four weeks of EFT for food cravings and other weight-related issues. A follow-up of the EFT participants one year after the initial 4-week study found significant improvements in weight and body mass index (BMI), as well as food cravings, the subjective power of food, craving restraint, and psychological coping.

Other research has found that most dieters regain all the weight they lost in the two years following the end of a weight loss program, and usually end up weighing even more. The opposite occurred in the EFT study, with participants continuing to lose weight over the course of the following year.

Average weight loss was 11.1 lb (5.05 kg). Lead researcher, Peta Stapleton, PhD, of Bond University, concluded: “It appears EFT can result in participants maintaining reduced cravings over time and affect weight and BMI in overweight and obese individuals.”

EFT is a noninvasive technique that pairs the recall of emotional upsets (a form of exposure therapy, a common method in psychology) with physical stimulation of specific points on the body to discharge stress (as identified by thousands of years of use in acupuncture).

A range of studies and review papers, published in peer-reviewed psychology journals, has shown EFT to affect metabolism. They demonstrate that EFT lowers levels of the hormone cortisol, which is associated with belly fat. EFT also reduces the brain wave frequencies associated with emotional trauma, and appears to “turn off” genes associated with stress.

EFT is the centerpiece of the EFT for Weight Loss Program developed by Dawson Church, author of the book EFT for Weight Loss. The program runs for six weeks, and re-trains participants to reduce their cravings, eliminate emotional eating, and recognize the brain patterns that lead to impulsive behaviors. It includes video and audio training, lesson plans, and EFT procedures targeted at specific problems such as chocolate cravings, fear of failure, and body image.

Hundreds of EFT for Weight Loss participants have written to report the positive results they are having in applying EFT to their weight issues. One such report comes from EFT for Weight Loss practitioner and nutritionist Karen Donaldson, a nutritionist and coach for the EFT for Weight Loss Program who herself lost 25 lb after discovering EFT: “My relationship with food has changed. I rarely have cravings or eat for emotional issues. I’m truly experiencing peace with food – and with life.” 

For Cost of One Drug, Military Might Have Cured 86% of Veterans With PTSD​

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For Cost of One Drug, Military Might Have Cured 86% of Veterans With PTSD

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

National Institute for Integrative Healthcare

SANTA ROSA, CA. During the last ten years, the Veterans Administration (VA) and the Defense Department (DOD) spent $791 million on a drug called Risperidone. Initially touted as a treatment for PTSD, a clinical trial published in the Journal of the American Medical Association eventually showed that it was no more effective than a placebo – an inert comparison pill. 

Because they offer the allure of a quick fix, writing prescriptions for PTSD and other mental health problems like anxiety and depression has become the norm in the military. Meanwhile, the Pentagon and VA rebuffed repeated attempts to evaluate EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques), an evidence-based behavioral treatment for PTSD. EFT has been shown to be effective for PTSD in two clinical trials and a number of outcome studies.

A typical result comes from one trial published in the prestigious Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, the oldest peer-reviewed psychiatry journal in North America. It found that after six sessions of EFT, 86% of veterans no longer suffered from PTSD. The results held up over time. Participants also experienced marked drops in pain, depression, and anxiety. Other research shows that EFT is safe, reliable, and easy to learn. The largest training organization in the US, EFT Universe, makes The EFT Mini-Manual available free online so that basic instruction in the method is freely available to anyone, including veterans and their family members.

During the decade the Pentagon wrote those millions of dollars of Risperidone prescriptions, practitioners made many attempts to present EFT to the military. The lead investigator for the six session study is Dr. Dawson Church, author of the book The Genie in Your Genes, and founder of the Veterans Stress Solution. He says, “I began presenting the evidence for EFT to the VA in 2006. I’ve talked to generals in the Pentagon, the top officials at the Defense Center for Excellence, and many VA mental health professionals. Unfortunately, few have shown any interest in non-drug treatments. Thousands of veterans have now sought help through the Veterans Stress Solution because they can’t get these treatments at the VA.”

The price of drugs can be compared with the cost of treatment with EFT. An estimated 500,000 Iraq and Afghanistan veterans suffer from PTSD. The cost of six sessions with an EFT practitioner for every one of them comes to $300 million. For less than half of what the military spent on an ineffective drug treatment, it could have purchased this effective and safe behavioral treatment for every veteran with PTSD. If the results were as good as those in the studies, nearly nine out of ten of those veterans would be PTSD-free today.

Frustrated with the lack of progress, in 2010 several members of congress wrote a lengthy letter to top military mental health professionals. They proposed 7 simple and cost-free steps to help veterans gain access to EFT, such as circulating copies of clinical trials to VA mental health professionals. Three years later, none of these steps have been taken. Rep. Tim Ryan (D-Ohio) wrote to Secretary of State for Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki urging action to get EFT to veterans, and was also rebuffed.

Meanwhile, the prescription drug machine rolls on. In 2012, according to a report in the American-Statesman, “the Pentagon spent more on pills, injections and vaccines than it did on Black Hawk helicopters, Abrams tanks, Hercules C-130 cargo planes and Patriot missiles — combined.” 

For more information visit the EFT Research Bibliography.

To schedule an interview with Dr. Dawson Church, please email us.

New Study Shows Dramatic Reduction of PTSD in 86% of Veterans

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New Study Shows Dramatic Reduction of PTSD in 86% of Veterans

Novel Therapy Produces “Highly Significant” Results

Foundation for Epigenetic Medicine

SANTA ROSA, CA. In a randomized controlled study (the gold standard of scientific research) of 59 U.S. veterans with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), six hour-long sessions of a treatment method called Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) resulted in a highly significant reduction of their symptoms. An impressive 86% of those receiving the treatment dropped from the category of clinical (severe) PTSD to the category of subclinical PTSD.

This is the best result for PTSD ever obtained in a clinical trial of any therapy.

The study has been published in the prestigious Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, the oldest peer-reviewed psychiatry journal in North America. It offers hope to the estimated 500,000 U.S. veterans of the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan suffering from PTSD, as well as the 479,000 diagnosed Vietnam veterans.

More than 80% of PTSD sufferers meet diagnostic criteria for other psychological disorders as well, and all of the veterans in this study had clinical scores for anxiety and depression, as well as PTSD. They also had high levels of physical symptoms like pain and insomnia going into the study, but much lower levels after six EFT sessions.

Study lead investigator Dawson Church, PhD, of the Foundation for Epigenetic Medicine in Santa Rosa, California, explains that “highly significant” is a scientific term for the p value in the study, which was .0001. That means that there is only one possibility in ten thousand that the results were due to chance.

EFT is an innovative technique that pairs the recall of traumatic memories (a form of exposure therapy, a common method in psychology) with physical stimulation of specific points on the body to discharge stress (as identified by thousands of years of use in acupuncture).

The veterans in the study were retested after 3 months and again after 6 months, and they remained stable. PTSD did not return in the 86% of veterans who moved from clinical to subclinical symptom levels.

Two other randomized controlled trials of EFT have shown similar results for PTSD. EFT has met many of the criteria for an “empirically validated treatment” published by the Clinical Psychology division of the American Psychological Association (APA).

Several congressmen have advocated EFT to Secretary for Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki. The Veterans Administration (VA) does not currently offer EFT to patients; Senator Chuck Schumer called on it to change, saying, “The VA cannot have this ‘see no evil hear no evil’ attitude. If they think the treatment works, they ought to give it to people.”

For more information visit the EFT Research Bibliography.

To schedule an interview with Dr. Dawson Church, please email us.

New Research Reveals Long-term Weight Loss Is Possible

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New Research Reveals Long-term Weight Loss Is Possible

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

National Institute for Integrative Healthcare

SANTA ROSA, CA. After a diet program, most people gain back all the weight they lost, and more. That’s the finding from an analysis of 31 studies by a team from the University of California who examined the long-term results of dieters.

However, there are new research findings that show promise in reversing the trend, making it possible for dieters to maintain their gains, and even lose additional weight over time.

In a study conducted by psychologist Peta Stapleton, PhD, of Bond University, participants learned a stress reduction method called Emotional Freedom Techniques or EFT. When tracked a year after completing a weight loss program, participants had lost an additional 11.1 lb. An online EFT coaching program called Naturally Thin You showed the same results, with continued weight loss after the program ended.

An earlier study of 216 healthcare workers such as doctors, nurses, psychotherapists and chiropractors found that their food cravings were reduced by 83% after a brief EFT session.

The core of the original Naturally Thin You course was the live group-coaching teleclasses with dietician and nutritionist, Karen Donaldson, MS. These sessions teach skills that counter emotional eating, which is one of the primary reasons that people return to their old habits—and their old weight—after a diet. Says Donaldson: “Eating when we’re hungry isn’t the problem. It’s the eating we do for emotional reasons: anxiety, boredom, loneliness, anger, and low self-esteem.” 

Naturally Thin You participants are taught to identify the emotional triggers that prompt them to reach for problem foods, and to neutralize those triggers using EFT. The studies noted improvements in mood disorders such as anxiety and depression as well as eating habits. One participant says, “My need to use food for comfort nearly vanished. I’ve lost over 40 pounds and I’ve never felt better. Even my depression is healing.”

Others report weight loss without dieting, as well as normalization of diabetic markers such as blood triglyceride levels.

Donaldson teaches the 6-week online program twice a year, with participants going through the experience as a group. Preliminary research shows them losing a pound a week on the program. However, after it ends, they do not regain the weight as is typical after most diets. When tracked over the course of the following year, they had continued to lose weight; six lb. on average. Some had lost close to 100 lb. over the course of the year.

EFT Hearings in Congress

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EFT Hearings in Congress

by Dawson Church, PhD

SANTA ROSA, CA. One of the most exciting developments for EFT in recent months has been the interest shown by various members of Congress. Both Republican and Democrat members of the House of Representatives and the Senate have used their influence to help get EFT recognized by the officials responsible for mental health in various government agencies.

The most recent such event was a roundtable hearing called by Representative Dan Lungren (R, California 3rd District). Dan Lungren is a former Attorney General of California, and serves on several influential committees including the House Homeland Security Committee.

Dan called a hearing for September 15th to showcase the use of EFT for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Dan’s Legislative Analyst, Sandra Wiseman, has been passionate in her advocacy of energy medicine in general, and EFT in particular, and put a great deal of time and enthusiasm into organizing the event. Letters went out from Dan’s office to key mental health officials inviting them to be present or to send a representative. These officials included the honorable Eric Shinseki, Secretary of State for Veterans Affairs, and Col Robert Saum, commanding officer of the Defense Center for Excellence in Mental Health (DCoE). In an earlier report, you saw a photo of me with General Loree Sutton, former commanding officer of the DCoE. Col Saum has recently replaced Gen Sutton. In an historic event, I was invited to testify before the House Veterans Affairs Committee on July 20th, when committee chairman Bob Filner (D-San Diego) called a roundtable hearing on “Innovative Treatments for PTSD and TBI.” I spoke on behalf of EFT along with clinical psychologist David Feinstein (author of Personal Mythology and other books) and fiduciary Wayne Miller. This was the first time energy medicine has had a voice in congressional testimony.

Dan’s office also requested observers from the National Institute of Health (NIH), the Institute of Medicine (IOM), the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Standards Administration (SAMHSA).

Organizing the hearing was difficult. Congress only came back into session September 13th, and staffers had a backlog of business on their over-full plates. Congressional elections were less than six weeks away. Poll numbers indicated that Republicans were likely to win control of the House of Representatives. The looming elections were dominating everyone’s attention; if the Republicans won the house, they would take over all the Committees; Bob Filner would lose his chairmanship of the House Veterans Affairs Committee. Dan himself was in a tight race; it was uncertain if he would be re-elected. In two months, Dan and Sandra might be looking for jobs.

I had committed a year ago to teach EFT workshops in France starting Sep 18th, so between my schedule and the electoral calendar, Wednesday Sep 15th was the only possible window when hearings could occur.

Between finding a location in which to hold the hearings, to getting approval from the congressman of the text of the invitation letters, the invitations were sent only two weeks before the hearings. The initial responses were not positive. Shinseki’s office sent a response to a previous letter stating that EFT was not on the list of approved therapies at the VA and no circumstances were possible in which his department could contemplate using it. Some agencies declined to send observers. Staffers from other congressional offices could not attend because of the many other demands on their time. I phoned Sandra the weekend before, and she was frustrated at the lack of response. It seemed as though we might be presenting EFT to an empty room. Yet after the phone call, with my mind full of the recent setbacks, a little intuitive voice whispered, “Wednesday Miracle. Expect a Wednesday Miracle.” I phoned Sandra again and told her to expect a Wednesday Miracle, while another little voice in my head, the Eternal Skeptic, sneered at me, saying, “You’re telling people to expect a miracle, and you have no idea what you’re talking about!”

Against this far-from-optimal backdrop, with the craziness in Washington DC even more crazy than usual, the hearings were held. Sandra made a last-minute push, and when the hearing opened, there were about 35 representatives of various agencies and congressional offices present. We assembled a great team to represent EFT. Wayne Miller spoke about the rise of energy medicine, and its financial implications. Two veterans talked about their experiences: John Dolan, who led a rifle company in Vietnam, and “Jim,” a veteran who phoned in but remained anonymous, worried about losing his PTSD benefits. Olli Toukolehto, who is about to graduate from medical school, spoke about his time in Iraq, and recovering from PTSD with EFT. Two private therapists spoke, Anita Bains, and Tracey Middleton, plus Cathy Angelica, a case manager who works at a Veterans Administration hospital. Delores Hall, the mother of veteran Carlin Sloan, told her moving story of how hopeless Carlin’s PTSD symptoms seemed until they found EFT. Carlin wrote a powerful letter which was distributed to everyone at the hearing, along with EFT research.

After the EFT presentation, Col. Charles Engle from the Defense Center of Excellence in PTSD and TBI (DCoE) stood up and spoke at length. Col Engle is one of the top researchers in the PTSD field, with many papers published in peer-reviewed journals to his credit, and an expert in research design. He talked about the challenges DCoE faces, and some of the key findings that recent PTSD research has illuminated. He and I had an excellent exchange about ways in which EFT could be incorporated into some of the research projects that DCoE is planning, and after the hearing ended, we continued a warm and passionate dialog on the ways in which EFT could help reduce PTSD symptoms in veterans. Anita, Cathy, and Tracey emphasized to him how it would help troops deal with their symptoms immediately after traumatic experiences, and Delores said teaching EFT in basic training would improve warrior resiliency skills. Col Engle soaked up the research data eagerly. I promised him a copy of EFT for PTSD.

He invited us to visit DCoE as his guests, and it’s likely that Tracey, Anita, and Sandra, and perhaps the congressman too, who all live close by, will set up a time to tour his facility and learn more about how to interface with Col Engle’s work. It might also be possible to demonstrate EFT with some of his troops, since he supervises both the research and treatment branches of the mental health service. The Wednesday Miracle!

The ripples from the hearing might spread out further, as representatives from other agencies speak to their colleagues about EFT. Before the July 20th hearing, energy medicine had no place at the table at the level of national debate. Now, awareness is spreading, slowly and imperceptibly, that there might be a solution to this huge problem of PTSD. The irony is that the Veterans Administration (VA) is a massive healthcare system serving hundreds of thousands of patients with PTSD, but has no EFT. The Iraq Vets Stress Project (www.StressSolution.org) has over 100 coaches and therapists trained in EFT, but few veterans. The sufferers are in one bucket, the cure in another bucket, with no pipe connecting the two buckets. While the VA receives billions of dollars each year in federal funding, the Stress Solution project consists of volunteers, with the few dollars in hard costs funded by private donations from the EFT community. The money is in one bucket, and the cure in another, again with no pipe connecting the two buckets. This has to change.

Since the VA is the place where veterans go for treatment, my vision is that it will become a primary site for the delivery of EFT. Imagine if the VA, now struggling with the burden of 300,000 new veterans with PTSD, in addition to the Vietnam generation, caught fire with the possibility of stamping out PTSD. For a massive and slow-moving bureaucracy, not built for change, that might sound like wishful thinking. Yet public health officials of the past generations moved mountains when cures for various diseases were put in their hands. Typhoid fever was eradicated by dedicated public employees a century ago, once its causes and cures were discovered. The same occurred for cholera, polio, and smallpox. Once a vision exists for the eradication of a plague, and the tools are put in the hands of practical people, solutions that were unimaginable before, like a cure for PTSD, become conceivable. The impossible becomes the inevitable.

I believe we are moving through just such a time in the treatment of PTSD, and that in just a year, the whole picture will have changed. By this time in 2011, thousands of VA clinicians might have been trained in EFT, and tens of thousands of veterans and warriors treated with EFT. The VA might have a timetable of less than a year before it has offered EFT to every single veteran suffering from PTSD. Just a thousand full time clinicians can provide six hour-long sessions of EFT (the minimum number we’ve found it takes) to every one of those 300,000 veterans in only a single year. Such a treatment plan would also cost only 1/3 of the $584 million congress has already spent on PTSD research in the last three years. It is thus an achievable and affordable goal, and one which would restore the possibility of normal lives to hundreds of thousands of sufferers who, right now, have no prospect of such a bright future.

This would reduce the suffering not just of the veterans themselves, but of the spouses, children, and communities affected by “transferred PTSD,” the impact of living with a suffering veteran. Recovered veterans might themselves begin to learn EFT, and teach it to other veterans. EFT could be spreading like wildfire among the veteran community.

Please imagine with me a 2012 in which the impossible has become the historical, and we are together looking back at the plague of PTSD as a phenomenon of the unenlightened past. Such visions become frameworks around which reality can organize itself, shaping the events of the present in ways that invite them to conform to the brightest possibilities of the future.

Please also share this vision of PTSD as history with anyone you believe is in a position to help make it happen. If you live in the US, you might speak to a businessman, trust, family member, or foundation with the funds to hire the core staff to expand the Iraq Vets Stress Project into an organization with much greater reach. That would put cash into the bucket containing the cure. You might contact a local veterans organization, and present EFT to them. You might talk to a spouse or officer you know, who can urge the VA to use EFT. You might volunteer to treat vets for free yourself. If we sow seeds together, we can create great change. As Margaret Mead famously observed, “Never think that a small group of committed people cannot change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has!”

NIMH Dumps DSM Diagnosis

In a dramatic announcement, Thomas Insel, the director of the US government agency that provides grants for the study of mental illness, the National Institutes of Mental Health (NIMH), has rejected the “bible” of psychiatric diagnosis, the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual).

In a dramatic announcement Thomas Insel the director of the US government agency that provides grants for the study of mental illness the National Institutes of Mental Health NIMH has rejected the bible of psychiatric diagnosis the DSM Diagnostic and Statistical Manual.

The DSM has been used for decades to define psychological conditions such as PTSD depression and anxiety and has become widely used even in areas for which it was never originally intended such as law and insurance reimbursement.

Insel writes that the NIMH will be reorienting its research away from DSM categories.

The fifth edition of the DSM has been more than a decade in the making and is just weeks away from publication.

Says Insel:

“While DSM has been described as a Bible for the field, it is at best a dictionary creating a set of labels and defining each. The strength of each of the editions of DSM has been reliability — each edition has ensured that clinicians use the same terms in the same ways. The weakness is its lack of validity. Unlike our definitions of ischemic heart disease lymphoma or AIDS, the DSM diagnoses are based on a consensus about clusters of clinical symptoms, not any objective laboratory measure. In the rest of medicine, this would be equivalent to creating diagnostic systems based on the nature of chest pain or the quality of fever. Indeed, symptom-based diagnosis once common in other areas of medicine has been largely replaced in the past half century as we have understood that symptoms alone rarely indicate the best choice of treatment. Patients with mental disorders deserve better.”

Rather than the DSM, Insel writes that the NIMH will use the Research Domain Criteria RDoC which use genetic neurological and cognitive data. According to a statement issued by the board of the International Society for Ethical Psychology and Psychiatry ISEPP the DSM supports the perpetuation of myths about mental emotional and behavioral disturbances in individuals which favor pseudo-scientific biological explanations and disregard their lived context.

The evolving editions of the DSM have been remarkable in expanding psychiatric labels for alleged mental illnesses with no scientifically substantiated biological etiologies.

Adherents of biopsychiatric explanations and pharmaceutical manufacturers are the primary benefactors of public acceptance of this myth.

ISEPP recommends public scrutiny and skepticism regarding the DSM as well as a constructive dismantling of the psychiatric pharmaceutical complex through which it is continually supported and redeployed. According to another ISEPP member, Insel’s statement is also an implicit admission that there is no real theoretical basis for drug treatments for mental illness.

See also this Scientific American blog post on the issue:


dawson-church-phd-headshotDawson Church, PhD, is an award-winning science writer with three best-selling books to his credit. The Genie in Your Genes was the first book to demonstrate that emotions drive gene expression. Mind to Matter showed that the brain creates much of what we think of as “objective reality.” Bliss Brain demonstrates that peak mental states rapidly remodel the brain for happiness. Dawson has conducted dozens of clinical trials, and founded the National Institute for Integrative Healthcare (NIIH) to promote groundbreaking new treatments. Dawson shares how to apply these health and performance breakthroughs through EFT Universe.

EFT for Fibromyalgia

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EFT for Fibromyalgia

Sufferers Report Less Pain, Anxiety, Depression

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE. SANTA ROSA, CA. Many of the symptoms of fibromyalgia, such as muscle pain, anxiety, and depression, can be relieved, according to recent research. A randomized controlled trial conducted by Dr. Gunilla Brattberg of Lund University in Sweden showed that fibromyalgia sufferers reported relief after an online course in EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques).

Brattberg’s results, as well as the stories of dozens of patients with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) are summarized in the book “EFT for Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue.” Compiled by Dawson Church, PhD, Executive Director of the National Institute for Integrative Healthcare, the book examines the most common symptoms of fibromyalgia and the closely related diagnosis of CFS and shows how EFT can be used to relieve the symptoms common to both conditions.

Many sufferers tell their stories in the book. Some describe complete remission of all their symptoms, while others point to partial successes, such as regaining freedom of movement and the ability to travel.

EFT combines acupressure with aspects of cognitive therapy. It has been shown to be efficacious for depression, anxiety and pain in many other studies, but the book represents the first time a systematic description of how to apply EFT for fibromyalgia has been available to healthcare providers and patients.

Says Church, “It’s particularly encouraging that EFT works this well when delivered online. Many of those dealing with this tragic condition can’t easily leave home, especially when their symptoms flare up. Whether they experience full recovery or partial relief, they are usually very grateful for the change.”

The National Institutes of Health web site describes fibromyalgia as “incurable,” making EFT a potential breakthrough treatment. An estimated 5 million American adults suffer from the disease, while estimates of the number of Australians are as high as 20% of the population. The lessons learned from patients and described in the book, combined with the principles from Brattberg’s study, are now also available in the form of an online self-help course called FibroClear.