Emotional freedom techniques (EFT) versus cognitive behavioural therapy for food cravings in overweight and obese adults



Obesity is a chronic disease estimated to account for between 0.7% and 2.8% of a country's total healthcare expenditures (Withrow & Alter, 2010). Food cravings frequently lead to consumption of the craved food (Hill & Heaton-Brown, 1994), are positively correlated with BMI (Delahanty, Meigs, Hayden, Williamson, & Nathan, 2002; Franken & Muris, 2005) and obese adults report preferences for high fat foods (Drewnowski et al., 1985), therefore addressing these cravings in treatment is paramount. This study will examine treatment of food cravings in overweight or obese adults. Food craving is hypothesised to be an important intervening causal variable in the development of obesity. Research examining meridian-based procedures (e.g. Emotional Freedom Techniques, EFT) for food cravings has recently found significant improvements occurred in weight, body mass index, food cravings, subjective power of food, craving restraint and psychological coping for participants from pre- to 12-months after a 4-week treatment (pbetween groupsfor total food craving, power over food and restraint ability. Post hoc analyses showed CBT to contribute to explaining one of these differences (total food craving; waitlist versus CBT, p=0.022); the psycho-education group did not reach significance in explaining any differences. The waitlist versus EFT was significant in explaining all three – consistent with the Stapleton, Sheldon, Porter and Whitty (2011, 2012) publications. The benefits of this study will include determining the most effective long-term treatment for food cravings. When this is established it will form an invaluable component of future weight loss programs, as willpower over food cravings is often noted as a difficult issue when people try to lose weight.
Date made available2013
PublisherBond University
Date of data production2012 - 2013

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