I had thought of featuring this little gem on Your Friday Dose of Woo before, but my Friday feature usually requires a bit more to go on. Well, not exactly. Rather, it requires a bit more quotable material, the better for hilarity to ensue, and this is just a book with a description and some comments, but it’s a nice bit of bizarre bonus silliness to start out the long holiday weekend.

The title of the book?

How to Good-Bye Depression: If You Constrict Anus 100 Times Everyday. Malarkey? or Effective Way? by Hiroyuki Nishigaki

I kid you not. Thanks, Stupidity Tracker, for turning me on to this most fascinating treatment for depression! Here’s the book description:

I think constricting anus 100 times and denting navel 100 times in succession everyday is effective to good-bye depression and take back youth. You can do so at a boring meeting or in a subway. I have known 70-year-old man who has practiced it for 20 years. As a result, he has good complexion and has grown 20 years younger. His eyes sparkle. He is full of vigor, happiness and joy. He has neither complained nor born a grudge under any circumstance. Furthermore, he can make love three times in succession without drawing out.

In addition, he also can have burned a strong beautiful fire within his abdomen. It can burn out the dirty stickiness of his body, release his immaterial fiber or third attention which has been confined to his stickiness. Then, he can shoot out his immaterial fiber or third attention to an object, concentrate on it and attain happy lucky feeling through the success of concentration.

If you don’t know concentration which gives you peculiar pleasure, your life looks like a hell.


I think the bad English adds just the touch to this woo to elevate it above the rest, don’t you? After all, if the key to health were nothing more than, as Nishigaki apparently believes, to have six bowel movements a day, to constrict your anus 100 times a day, and to dent your navel 100 times a day. Alas, there is no “look inside the book” feature on Amazon for this bit of woo, otherwise I might have searched around for particularly juicy (if you’ll excuse the term) comments like, apparently, this:

Besides shooting out a big blank from your buttock, you can feel as if your root chakra leaked sweet hot mucus.

Access to a few more quotes like that, and I’d have a YFDoW to rival quantum homeopathy, DNA activation, sound healing, or Dr. Emoto’s water.

I think some of the Amazon reviews tell it all:

…as a general humor book, this is probably one of the funniest and most bizarre reads you’ll encounter. I still randomly open to a page, read it, and feel better about whatever the heck was bringing me down in the first place. Get this book for comedy, not for advice.

Maybe that was the plan all all along. Or this comment:

I can’t wait until the sequel to this book comes out – “squeeze your nipples 423 times a day to relieve headaches”. Until that time, I must be content with this modern-day Godsend. Originally I have heard that this book was a cast-aside chapter of the New Testament. Apparently, some idiot thought that this wouldn’t be prudent as Bible-material. Well, it sure is prudent to me. I’ve been teaching my dog to obey this book as well. In fact, I’m working on a technique to teach dogs how to constrict their anuses at your command. So useful, really. This book is wonderful. Praise the mighty anus, master of all that is anti-depressent, helpful, brown, and a little stinky.

Indeed. Of course, I’ve commented on the apparent anal fixation of some alternative medicine practitioners before. By comparison, Nishigaki’s fixation seems harmless and probably a whole lot less stinky.


  1. #1 Anuminous
    May 26, 2007

    Well, I suppose that if you talk out of your ass for a living six bowel movements a day will make you feel like you can communicate more clearly?

  2. #2 Sid Schwab
    May 26, 2007

    I’m having a hard time reconciling the muscle-toning effect of 100 constrictions with the ability to get one’s head up there…

  3. #3 Voice 0'Reason
    May 26, 2007

    Hmmm… I might still have a copy (sent to me by an uncle with a sense of humor) lurking in a box somewhere. If I stumble upon it in a rare fit of stuff-organizing I’ll try to remember to mention it to you, in case you might want to peruse it.

    (As I recall, it’s quite amusing in small doses.)

    A couple of random thoughts:

    1. I’m very disappointed that George Shollenberger doesn’t seem to have written a review of this book at Amazon. Surely there’s some way that he could work in a mention of his own book.

    2. I think it’s high time that Oprah featured this book on her show. That would almost make it worth watching an episode, just to hear her gushing about the wonders of anal constriction… (Then, if it turned out that the author hadn’t been entirely truthful, she could invite him on and… erm… tear him a new one.)

  4. #4 sparc
    May 26, 2007

    You left one question unanswered: How many pages did the author fill with this BS?

  5. #5 Tyler
    May 26, 2007

    Another question: Does this woo come printed on two-ply?

  6. #6 PZ Myers
    May 26, 2007

    I think I’ll wait for the “Sphincters of Steel” video to come out.

  7. #7 llewelly
    May 26, 2007

    Poo Woo, the best analternative medicine?

  8. #8 daedalus2u
    May 26, 2007

    Actually Orac, there may be some physiology behind this. The anal sphincter is nitrergic, that is, it is activated (relaxed) by nitric oxide. By constricting one’s anal sphincter 100 times a day, one is exercising the necessary muscles, no doubt increasing their capacity to do work, capillary density, and perfusion rate. Since it is a NO concentration that causes anal sphincter relaxation, and because hemoglobin destroys NO, greater perfusion of the anal sphincter would make relaxation of that sphincter more difficult, unless there was increased capacity to generate NO. I suspect there may be compensatory increases in basal NO to allow for the necessary relaxation. This increase in basal NO would have salutary effects on the various aspects of physiology mentioned including depression and erectile physiology. Erectile physiology is well known to be mediated through NO, and can be treated either with NO donors, or with inhibitors of PDE5 such as sildenafil.

    It is not dissimilar to the Kegel exercise which is reported to have beneficial effects for both men and women. There is even a song about it.

  9. #9 coturnix
    May 26, 2007

    Just do your Kegels…as they say in birthing classes…

  10. #10 coturnix
    May 26, 2007

    …yet this never prevented Post-partum depression.

  11. #11 daedalus2u
    May 26, 2007
  12. #12 HP
    May 26, 2007

    Malarkey? Or Effective Way?

    Reminds me of that great quote from the movie The Black Cat (1934):

    Peter Allison (David Manners): It all sounds like a lot of superstitious baloney to me.
    Dr. Vitus Verdegast (Bela Lugosi): Superstitious, perhaps. Baloney? Perhaps not.

  13. #13 Justin Moretti
    May 26, 2007

    This sounds like a good one for the next edition of Russell Ash and Brian Lake’s classic Bizarre Books.

    Root chakra leaking sweet hot mucus. Given one of the meanings attached to “root” by Australians, the thought of that chakra leaking hot mucus really, really disturbs me.

  14. #14 Barry
    May 26, 2007

    “squeeze your nipples 423 times a day to relieve headaches”.

    That’s ridiculous. 100 times is more than sufficient; 423 times might cause injury.

  15. #15 Mat
    May 26, 2007

    Justin, if I remember right from my own teen woo era, the root chakra’s the one in the groinal region, so believe me, the image stays exactly the same even without the Australian connection.

  16. #16 Just another postdoc
    May 26, 2007

    What happens if you go the other way and get your sphincter gets stretched at the same frequency?

    The line starts here –>

    NIH study section
    unscrupulous competitors
    jealous labmates

  17. #17 Joseph Hertzlinger
    May 26, 2007

    I just discovered that laughing hysterically caused my anus to constrict and my navel to dent.

    Maybe there is something to this after all…

  18. #18 Alan Kellogg
    May 27, 2007

    Now I know how SSRIs work. 🙂

  19. #19 ilya zlatkovsky
    May 27, 2007

    “I have known 70-year-old man who has practiced it for 20 years. As a result, he has good complexion and has grown 20 years younger.”

    So the 70 year old man started when he was 50. And then he grew 20 years younger… so he’s 30 now? Will he turn into an embryo when he turns 100?

  20. #20 Justin Moretti
    May 27, 2007


    the root chakra’s the one in the groinal region

    I am well aware of this (or at least, I guessed in the context that it had to be there). So the combination of the root chakra being ‘rooted’, or being used in order to root, and leaking hot mucus was… yeah. Scary.

    At least us Aussies would say it is named appropriately.

  21. #21 Kapitano
    May 27, 2007

    In some parts of the UK we have an expression which means “load of absolute balderdash”. It is, and I kid you not: Bunch of Arse.

    So I’m off to bunch up my arse.

New comments have been temporarily disabled. Please check back soon.