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Man Boobs and How to Get Rid of Them

Why Some Men Have Man Boobs and How to Get Rid of Them

Contrary to popular belief, man boobs aren’t always a result of weight gain. You may find yourself working out every day and still finding it hard to get rid of man boobs — that’s because it may also be more of a hormonal issue. 

Men have breasts too, although they do not enlarge the way breasts do in women. Due to certain factors, men sometimes end up with enlarged breast tissue or gynaecomastia, commonly known as man boobs. This has both medical implications, such as a small lifetime risk of male breast cancer or may be indicative of health issues in other organ systems (such as the liver or the testes), as well as emotional implications such as taking a toll on one’s self-esteem and may be a source of embarrassment. 

Read on to find out about what causes man boobs and how to get rid of them. 

What causes man boobs?

Gynaecomastia is a relatively common disorder. In fact, up to 60% of boys have clinical gynaecomastia by 14 years of age. [1] Man boobs can be caused by a variety of reasons such as: 

Changes in hormone levels

Testosterone in men is what keeps the breast tissues from developing and enlarging. Fluctuations in testosterone levels, as well as an increase in oestrogen levels, can lead to the enlargement of breast tissues, also known as man boobs. [2]

This typically occurs in teenagers undergoing puberty, as well as men over the age of 50. Changes in hormone levels could also be caused by underlying medical conditions such as hyperthyroidism and kidney failure. 

Diet and exercise

Poor diet and the lack of exercise can also lead to man boobs. This occurs when excess fats are stored in the breast tissues, resulting in an increase in chest size. 

Diet and exercise

What can I do to get rid of man boobs?

If you find yourself with a hefty set of man boobs, don’t fret! There are ways to get rid of these and help you achieve your desired physique: 

See a doctor

You can start by seeing a doctor to rule out any underlying medical conditions that may be causing your enlarged breast tissues, such as hyperthyroidism or liver disease. 

If your man boobs are indeed caused by medical conditions or certain drugs, your doctor will be able to help rectify the issue by prescribing medications or finding alternative medications from those that had been prescribed to you. 

Exercise and a healthy diet

If your gynaecomastia is caused mainly by fat tissue, then yes, you can lose weight to reduce the size of your male breasts!

Cardio exercises such as walking, running and swimming can also help to burn excess fats and reduce the size of your man boobs. Additionally, you could try eating healthier. Cut down on foods with low nutritional values such as soda and candies, replacing these with healthier options like whole grains, oats and lean meats.  

Breast reduction surgery

Some men may turn to male breast reduction surgery or gynaecomastia correction to help combat their man boobs. This is the most effective way to get rid of man boobs. Male breast reduction surgery removes excess fat and glandular tissues, resulting in a flatter and slimmer chest. 

Dr Ho will examine whether your gynaecomastia is caused by fat or a hormonal issue by examining the breast disk under the areola during consultation. He’ll also let you know what can be done and what to expect for the surgery. 

What can I do to get rid of man boobs?

What’s gynaecomastia correction like?

Gynaecomastia correction is a day surgery procedure performed by your plastic surgeon. Here at Allure, Dr Samuel Ho will examine your condition and assess the best way for natural-looking breast reduction work based on your physical anatomy and the changes you desire. 

You will be put under general anaesthesia (GA) and the procedure performed using a minimally-invasive technique. Oral painkillers will be provided to be taken for a few days after the operation as you heal from the surgery. You can resume normal activities within a few days and there are usually no visible scars after a month.

It would also be good to note that your gynaecomastia could be a medical condition and, may be MediSave and/or insurance claimable if so. 


Understandably, although the majority of man boobs may not pose any health risk, it can still adversely affect one’s confidence. Fortunately, the appearance of man boobs can be reduced by losing weight or through surgical means. Always remember to communicate both your needs and concerns with your plastic surgeon so that they can work with you in getting your ideal physique. 

  1. Swerdloff, R. S., & Ng, C. M. (2019). Gynecomastia: etiology, diagnosis, and treatment. Endotext [Internet].
  2. Johnson, R. E., & Murad, M. H. (2009). Gynecomastia: pathophysiology, evaluation, and management. Mayo Clinic proceedings84(11), 1010–1015. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0025-6196(11)60671-X