How To Get Rid of Man Boobs

Man grabbing his man boobs


Men want to look good. It’s a fundamental aspect of our nature to want to enhance our appearance. However, sometimes, nature can make that difficult. One of those instances is when you develop man boobs, a condition otherwise known as gynecomastia. It may make you feel insecure about your appearance or embarrassed to take your shirt off. That’s also natural. Most likely, you’re looking for ways to get rid of those man boobs and reclaim your physique. You’ve come to the right place! In this article, we’re going to explore what gynecomastia is, its causes, symptoms, as well as how it is diagnosed. Then, we’ll dive into many different ways that you can start to get rid of your chest fat. Let’s get started!

What is Gynecomastia?

[According to Johns Hopkins Medicine]( is a condition of, the hormonal changes of puberty.), gynecomastia is a condition of overdevelopment or enlargement of the breast tissue in men or boys. The breasts may grow larger, or they may grow unevenly. It’s what we commonly refer to as man boobs or man breasts. Now that we have a basic understanding of the medical definition of this condition, let’s move on to its root causes.

Shirtless man sitting squeezing his breasts

Causes: Natural Hormone Changes

The Mayo Clinic states that the hormones testosterone and estrogen control sex characteristics in both men and women. Testosterone controls male traits, such as muscle mass and body hair, while estrogen manages female traits, including the growth of breasts. While you may believe that estrogen is a solely female hormone, it’s actually true that men produce it too (albeit in small quantities). Gynecomastia is typically caused by a “hormonal imbalance between estrogen and androgen hormones,” says the Cleveland Clinic. The reason that some men end up developing man breasts is because of one of two reasons:

  1. Their body is producing too much estrogen.
  2. Their body is not producing enough testosterone (known as hypogonadism).

Causes: Medications

There are a number of medications that can cause man boobs or gynecomastia. Let’s go through the various categories of medicines that can contribute to the development of gynecomastia.

bottles of medication

High Levels of Prolactin

Prolactin is a natural hormone in your body that has “more than 300 functions” in the body. Both men and women have it. However, if you have too much prolactin in your body, you might develop something called hyperprolactinemia. When this happens to men, it’s quite possible to develop symptoms of gynecomastia. Let’s go through some of the medications that can elevate prolactin levels:

Estrogen-like Effects

When a woman develops breasts, estrogen plays a key role. This is also true for men. If you’re taking a medication that raises the amount of estrogen in your body, gynecomastia can be a likely side effect. Here are some medications that elevate estrogen levels:

Anti-androgen Effects

Androgens are another group of hormones that are found in your body, the most common of which is testosterone. Androgens play many roles in your body, and one of those functions is blocking the effects of estrogen.

Certain medications get in the way of androgens like testosterone and DHT, stopping them from doing their job of blocking estrogen’s effects. As we mentioned, estrogen is a key factor in breast development for both men and women. Since the estrogen in your body is less restricted by androgens, you may be more likely to develop man boobs. Such androgen-inhibiting medications include:

Other Medicines

The above categories are the main medicinal causes of gynecomastia, however, there are a variety of others. Those are:

  • HIV drugs. Gynecomastia can sometimes be a side effect of an HIV treatment called “highly active antiretroviral therapy.”
  • Anti-anxiety drugs. Medicines such as diazepam (Valium) can sometimes cause gynecomastia.
  • Heart medications. Drugs such asdigoxin (Lanoxin) and calcium channel blockers can lead to gynecomastia sometimes.
  • Medicines used to empty your stomach. For example, metoclopramide (Reglan) can have gynecomastia as a side effect.

Causes: Health Conditions

Now we’ll take a look at the variety of health conditions that can contribute to the development of enlarged breasts in men and boys.

  • Hypogonadism. Conditions that lower testosterone production, such as Klinefelter syndrome or pituitary insufficiency, can be associated with gynecomastia.
  • Aging. Hormone changes that occur with aging can cause gynecomastia, especially in men who are overweight.
  • Tumors. Some tumors, such as those involving the testes, adrenal glands or pituitary gland, can produce hormones that alter the male-female hormone balance.
  • Hyperthyroidism. In this condition, the thyroid gland produces too much of the hormone thyroxine.
  • Kidney failure. About half the people being treated with dialysis experience gynecomastia due to hormonal changes.
  • Liver failure and cirrhosis. Changes in hormone levels related to liver problems and cirrhosis medications are associated with gynecomastia.
  • Malnutrition and starvation. When your body is deprived of adequate nutrition, testosterone levels drop while estrogen levels remain the same, causing a hormonal imbalance. Gynecomastia can also happen when normal nutrition resumes.


Let’s move on to what the typical symptoms are for men experiencing excess breast tissue and chest fat. Signs and symptoms of the condition may include:

  • Pain, particularly in adolescents
  • Swollen breast tissue
  • Breast tenderness
  • Nipple sensitivity with rubbing against clothes

It’s time to see a doctor if you’re experiencing any of the following:

  • Swelling
  • Pain or tenderness
  • Nipple discharge in one or both breasts


Diagnosing gynecomastia is done via a comprehensive review of your symptoms as well as through a variety of medical exams that involve a careful evaluation of your breast tissue, abdomen, and genitals. Here are some of the tests your doctor might order:

  • Blood tests
  • Mammograms
  • Computerized tomography (CT) scans
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans
  • Testicular ultrasounds
  • Tissue biopsies
man getting a blood drawn from his arm

How To Get Rid of Man Boobs

Now that we have taken some time to familiarize ourselves with what this condition is, what causes it, its symptoms, and how it’s diagnosed, let’s dive into the focal point of this article: how to get rid of man boobs. We’ll be covering a plethora of ways that you can start to reduce the amount of fatty tissue on your chest and begin the journey towards getting rid of your man boobs! Here are the things we’ll cover:

  • Exercise
  • Diet
  • Surgery
  • Hormone Therapy
  • Miscellaneous ways

Let’s get started!


The first and most effective way to start getting rid of your man boobs is via exercises that target your chest. Using a routine that works to build muscle while burning fat can be a key path to success. Picking exercises that work your whole body to kickstart your metabolism will help along with hammering the chest, so get ready to work hard and fast. Here are some exercises that target the chest and how to do them.

Barbell Bench Press

Start this exercise by placing your barbell on the rack above you. Make sure to pick a suitable weight for your strength level. Then, lie on the bench under the rack that holds the bar. Your eyes should be aligned with the center of the bar, and your body should lay flat on the bench. Your feet should be flat on the floor. It’s time to start the exercise.

  1. Grasp the barbell using an overhand grip, placing your thumbs on the outsides of your fist. Your arms are slightly wider than shoulder-width apart, and the angle of your upper arms is about 45 degrees to the body.
  2. Remove the barbell from the rack, and lock your elbows.
  3. Inhale while lowering the bar to your chest, right in line with your nipples.
  4. Exhale as you press the bar above your chest, extending your arms up.
  5. Repeat steps 3 – 5 until you complete your desired reps.

Once you’ve finished your reps, place the bar on the rack with elbows locked. Move the barbell backward until you feel the rack uprights, then lower the bar to the barbell rest.

These are the muscles that are worked via the barbell bench press:

  • Pectoralis major
  • Anterior deltoid
  • Triceps brachii
  • Biceps brachii
  • Serratus anterior
Barbell benchpress

Pec Deck Machine

The chest fly or “pec deck” is a great way for both beginners and those with experience to target the chest muscles without worrying about the balance required when using a bench, a ball, or when standing. It’s also a useful machine if you have a lower-body injury and need to avoid standing.

Here’s how to use the pec deck machine:

  1. Before you sit at the machine, select how much weight you want to work with using the sliding pins.
  2. Sit up tall and relax your neck and shoulders. Your feet should be flat on the floor.
  3. Grab the handles so that your palms are facing forward. Note that some machines have a foot bar that you need to push in order to release the handles and bring them forward.
  4. Press your arms together in front of your chest with a slow, controlled movement. Keep a slight, soft bend in the elbows with wrists relaxed.
  5. Pause for one second once your arms are fully “closed” in front of your chest.
  6. Bring your arms slowly back to the starting position, opening your chest and keeping your posture strong and upright.

That’s considered one repetition of this exercise; perform as many reps as you feel comfortable, and do at least two sets. As your strength and endurance improve, consider adding reps or doing an extra set.

These are the muscles that are worked via the pec deck machine:

  • Pectoralis major
  • Pectoralis minor
  • Serratus anterior

Bent-Forward Cable Crossovers

While some chest exercises such as the bench press activate compound muscle groups, other exercises such as this one isolate the chest area to maximize training impact. Let’s get into how to perform this exercise safely and effectively.

Attach the single-grip cable attachments to both sides of a dual pulley, and ensure that they are set in a low position (i.e. at floor level). Grasp the attachments, stand with your legs about shoulder-width apart or less, and lean forward slightly. Whether your legs are side by side or one in front of the other is a matter of preference. Select your desired weight from both sides of the machine before you start.

  1. Stand in the middle of the machine and grab the handles with your palms down.
  2. Lean your body over (maintaining a flat back) so the cables line up with your chest muscles.
  3. Push your arms down and in toward each other (crossing over) as you exhale.
  4. Return to your starting position slowly with an inhale.

That’s one rep; repeat as many times as comfortable to complete a full set. Try to do at least two sets, taking a short break between each set. As mentioned before, consider increasing your reps or adding another set as your strength and endurance improve.

The muscles used in this exercise are:

  • Pectoralis major
  • Pectoralis minor
  • Anterior shoulder deltoids
  • Multiple back muscles


The next major way that you can start to eliminate fatty tissue from your chest is via dieting! Diet and exercise are considered the two primary components of any successful weight loss regimen. While creating a diet plan and sticking to it can be a challenging task for anyone, if done correctly, it can produce powerful results. Let’s take a look at some ways that you can begin to alter your diet in order to sustain weight loss and lose man boobs.

The main way that weight loss is achieved is by creating a calorie deficit. This is when you are burning more calories than you are eating on a daily basis. It’s commonly known that one pound of body fat is made up of 3,500 calories. So, if you’re looking to lose one pound per week, you’ll need to create a calorie deficit of about 500 calories each day. Here is how you can create a solid diet plan to achieve a calorie deficit of 500 calories daily.

Table of healthy food

First, you’ll need to identify how many calories your body is burning on a daily basis. You can do this by using VeryWellFit’s tool here. Once you’ve calculated that number, simply subtract 500 from it. This will tell you how many calories you can consume daily to meet your goal of a 500-calorie deficit.

Now that you’ve figured out how many calories you can eat, it’s wise to begin using a calorie-tracking app. MyFitnessPal has been widely acclaimed as one of the best calorie-tracking apps available today. Their nutrition database is very extensive, containing over 5 million foods. You can also download recipes from the internet or create custom foods and dishes.

Here are some general dietary tips to achieve weight loss:

  • Cut out processed foods (i.e sweetened breakfast cereals, frozen meals, etc.)
  • Cut out foods that are high in sugar (i.e soda, candy, etc.)
  • Consume nutritious snacks (i.e apples, bananas, blueberries, grapes, etc.)


The next way to get rid of your man boobs is via gynecomastia surgery, also known as male breast reduction surgery. This cosmetic surgery involves a variety of steps that work together to reduce the amount of excess fat and glandular tissue, ultimately improving the look of the chest. This surgery is generally performed under general anesthesia, but it’s also well suited to be performed under oral sedation and local anesthesia. Let’s examine what takes place during this plastic surgery procedure.

Doctor drawing lines on patients chest

The main portion of male breast reduction surgery (reduction mammoplasty) is referred to as liposuction. Suction-assisted liposuction is performed through a thin metal cannula. This technique results in small, discrete scares where the cannula was inserted. It works to surgically remove the excess breast fat and glandular tissue through an incision in the margin of the nipple-areolar complex.

Preparing for surgery involves a variety of steps:

  • Stop medications that increase the risk of bleeding
  • Stop smoking
  • Increase nutrition to support healing after surgery

Miscellaneous Ways

The final section of this article is dedicated to a variety of miscellaneous methods and techniques to tackle male breast enlargement. These methods should be seen as supplemental ways to approach male enlarged breasts that should be used in addition to diet, exercise, and possibly surgery.

First, drinking green tea is seen as a natural remedy that promotes weight loss. it contains a number of antioxidants that can boost your metabolism to burn fat and calories. This reduced fat buildup works to reduce the size of your breasts.

Next, consuming flaxseed can also help battle male breasts. This is because flaxseed is high in omega-3 fatty acids, which are critical for regulating hormones. Adding flaxseed to your foods or drinking it with water can help to regulate estrogen levels and ultimately decrease breast size.


Gynecomastia, or male breasts, can be a great source of shame and embarrassment for men. However, the first step in overcoming such a condition is understanding what it’s all about. Thus, we covered the causes, symptoms, and diagnostic process for gynecomastia. The next step is finding credible ways to start reducing the chest fat on your body and increasing muscle mass. That’s why we explored three strategic chest exercises that will accomplish those objectives and looked at how diet can benefit the situation. We also discussed the surgical outlook on treating gynecomastia. Finally, we covered some miscellaneous methods to fight male breasts, such as drinking green tea and consuming flaxseed. These methods should be used in combination with diet and exercise, not on their own. Thanks for reading!

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