In the foreword to my friend and fellow Hay House author Nick Ortner’s New York Times Best-Selling The Tapping Solution, Dr. Mark Hyman relates the story of Paula, a patient of his who was debilitated by migraines that landed her in the ER as often as four times a month. She had tried everything—dietary changes, sleeping more, supplements, drugs—but her migraines persisted. So Dr. Hyman, out of options from the Western medicine or even functional medicine toolbox, referred her to Nick for an EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique or “tapping”) session.
A few months later, after going on what Paula called an “emotional journey,” Paula was 100% migraine-free, off all her medications, and once again engaging in the healthy, active, fulfilling lifestyle she had previously lost.
Later in the book, Nick tells the story of Jodi, a woman who was featured in Nick’s documentary about EFT, whose severe fibromyalgia left her dependent on cortisone injections that still failed to relieve her debilitating pain. During a tapping session, Nick asked her if anything significant had happened in her life prior to the onset of her fibromyalgia. She confessed that her daughter, who had been battling addiction, was HIV positive and pregnant. (This is the type of event I describe in Mind Over Medicine as a “root cause” of illness.)
After just one day of EFT, Jodi was able to climb a flight of stairs without pain and sleep through the night for the first time in years. By the end of her fourth day of treatment, Jodi was once again able to return to the nature walks she had given up because of the severity of her illness. Now, years later, she is symptom-free, having released the guilt and sadness she had felt over her inability to “save” her daughter. By releasing the emotions stored in her body, her body was free to heal itself.
Do Negative Emotions Cause Disease?
I love what Dr. Christiane Northrup has to say about this: “We are responsible to our illness, not for our illness.”
Kris Carr suggests that, rather than saying our mind creates disease, it’s more accurate to say it participates in disease. On the flip side, we can also participate in our healing.
Can EFT Cure Cancer?
In The Tapping Solution, Nick relates the story of Leah, who was diagnosed with lung cancer shortly after her sister Beth was diagnosed with a lung disease for which she refused treatment because she had lost the will to live after losing her husband a year before her own diagnosis.
After an hour of tapping around the trauma of losing Beth, Leah felt much less grief about losing Beth. She had even forgiven her for refusing treatment. But Leah still had lung cancer.
She embarked upon an aggressive EFT practice—tapping three times a day, clearing negative emotion, asking her body to heal itself, and thanking her body for responding.
Four months later, her cancer was gone, without chemotherapy, radiation, or surgery. Her cancer is still in remission today.
Did EFT cure her cancer? Nick is careful to say that such results are not typical and that nobody can prove that the EFT caused the kind of spontaneous remission I discuss in my latest TEDx talk.
But given what I learned after researching Mind Over Medicine, here’s my attempt to scientifically explain such “miracles.”
A Physiological Explanation for How EFT Could Cure Cancer
We know the body has natural self-repair mechanisms that fight cancer, kill bacteria, get rid of toxins and foreign bodies, repair broken proteins, slow aging, and generally keep the body healthy. But did you know that those natural self-repair mechanisms don’t function when the nervous system is in the midst of a “fight or flight” stress response? Yet, the average American experiences over fifty stress responses per day! No wonder our bodies aren’t doing their self-healing jobs as effectively as they could!
Only when the nervous system is in a counterbalancing relaxed state—in what Dr. Herbert Benson at Harvard named “the relaxation response”—can the body effectively heal itself.
And this is what EFT helps achieve. By calming down the trigger-happy, freaked out amygdala responsible for activating stress responses, EFT can reduce physiological stress responses and activate relaxation responses, thereby allowing the body to do what it does best—heal itself.
Healing Limiting Beliefs
Another mechanism by which EFT may help heal disease is by targeting the limiting beliefs that prevent healing, such as the belief that the body can’t heal itself.
The medical establishment has been proving for over fifty years that a potent combination of positive belief and the nurturing care of a healing professional can work self-healing wonders in the body. We call it “the placebo effect,” and it’s 18-80% effective, even when people enrolled in clinical trials know they might be getting a placebo!
But you don’t have to be enrolled in a clinical trial to enjoy the benefits of the placebo effect. You just have to believe that something—anything, even a sugar pill or saline injection—can help your body heal itself.
EFT can achieve this. By tapping on your limiting beliefs, you can change not just your conscious mind but the subconscious programming that operates you the majority of the time, allowing your mind the freedom to do what it knows how to do—help heal the body.
Have You Tried EFT?
Any successes? Any challenges? Share your stories in the comments below.
With faith in your self-healing capacities,
Lissa Rankin, MD is the creator of the health and wellness communities LissaRankin.com and OwningPink.com, author of Mind Over Medicine: Scientific Proof You Can Heal Yourself, TEDx speaker, and Health Care Evolutionary. Join her newsletter list for free guidance on healing yourself and check her out on Twitter and Facebook.
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