Stapleton, P., Bannatyne, A., Chatwin, H., Urzi, K.-C., Porter, B., & Sheldon, T. (2017). Secondary psychological outcomes in a controlled trial of Emotional Freedom Techniques and cognitive behaviour therapy in the treatment of food cravings. Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice, 28, 136-145. doi:10.1016/j.ctcp.2017.06.004
Link to full abstract and access to article at Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice
This is the first controlled non-inferiority trial to examine the effectiveness of two psychological interventions: Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT), in treating secondary psychological outcomes of obesity.
The CBT group did not report any significant changes in anxiety scores over time, but the decrease in depression symptoms pre-to post-intervention was significant and this was maintained at 6-and 12-months.
Anxiety and depression scores significantly decreased from pre-to post-intervention for the EFT group, and was maintained at 6- and 12-month follow-up.
Somatoform scores significantly decreased from pre-intervention to all follow-up points for the CBT group, while the EFT group did not report any significant changes in somatoform symptoms.
Results revealed that EFT is capable of producing reductions in anxiety and depression symptoms, and may be comparable to gold standard approaches such as CBT.
Psychological intervention is beneficial for treating psychological comorbidities of obesity and points to the role mental health issues may play in this area.