Wait, EFT stands for Emotional Freedom Technique right? So how can it positively affect our immune system?
First of all, EFT doesn’t only work on an emotional level. It is a somatic (body-based) technique that uses the stimulation of acupressure points, the same ones that are used in acupuncture to treat physical disease. EFT is known to reduce physical pain, muscle tension and other physical and physiological aspects of the body. In EFT we do not ‘think’ our way out of our emotions, but we calm the body and physiology so that new insights, thoughts and feelings can occur.
Second, the mind, body and emotions cannot really be separated. Different states of mind release different chemicals in the body such as adrenalin, endorphins, serotonin, cortisol, and many others. These cause physiological and physical effects in the body, as well as emotional states. The ‘feel-good’ biochemicals (for example, endorphins and serotonin) also have a positive effect on our immune system. The ‘stress’ hormones (such as adrenalin and cortisol) have a damaging effect on our immune system when the stress is long-lasting and unresolved.
We feel and perceive emotions in our bodies – it might be feeling butterflies in the stomach when we are nervous, or a ringing in our ears when angry. To take a basic example, think of what happens if you deliberately take slower, deeper breaths when you are feeling anxious. As your mind tells your breath to slow down (a physical aspect), your pulse rate also slows and your stress hormones start to decrease (physiological aspect). This in turn makes you feel more relaxed and less anxious (emotional aspect). A similar phenomenon, though more complex, is involved in the effects that EFT can have on the immune system.
The function of the immune system is to protect us from getting ill. It consists of a number of different and inter-related organs, tissues, cells and processes that spot pathogens such as viruses and cancer cells, and destroy them. Some examples of parts of the immune system are the white blood cells, the spleen, the lymphatic system, and the inflammation process.
Studies have shown that levels of cortisol (one of the main stress hormones) decrease by 43% after only one hour of EFT tapping.
How does that help the immune system? Stress hormones such as cortisol suppress the immune system and the body produces fewer white blood cells. The lower your levels of these cells, the more susceptible you are to illnesses such as colds and flu. Therefore, lowering levels of stress hormones allows the body to recover its natural function and produce optimum numbers of disease-fighting cells.
In addition, cortisol is inflammatory. A certain amount of inflammation is part of the body’s effective immune response, however chronic stress, chronic high cortisol levels and chronic inflammation cause disease.
Being overweight, obese or underweight all lower our immunity. A person in the healthy weight range has the strongest and healthiest immune system. Numerous studies and anecdotal evidence exist showing that a course of EFT can be very effective to help people lose weight, exercise more and eat more healthily.
Research has shown that being happy boosts our immune system, for example in one study people who had high scored of happiness were three times less likely to get a cold as those who reported being less happy. When we use EFT with a qualified practitioner to work through our problems, we become happier!
In research studies, people report feeling happier after a course of EFT. In my experience, clients become happier in many different ways: they do not merely feel ‘not sad’ but feel more empowered, confident, and have improved self-esteem. Their relationships improve. They gain self-knowledge and become aware of what they need and want and are increasingly able to take action to get it. They gain the courage to do things that they love, make time for themselves, and make changes to their relationships and work environment. They have the courage and confidence to say no to what no longer serves them, and to say yes to other things that serve them better. All of these things contribute to a happier life and improved immune system function.
Are you now keen to get tapping and boost your immune system?
Get started with my videos using No-Words Tapping and Basic EFT.
Come and join my free Facebook group where I regularly offer free group tapping sessions.
Or, if you’d like to find out how I can help you with deeper work on a one-to-one basis, please contact me to set up a free 20 minute chat and explore the options!
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