- What causes man boobs?
- How can man boobs be treated?
- Man boobs can be conquered!
If you’re concerned that your pecs aren’t looking as firm or as flat as you’d prefer, you’re not alone. It has been estimated that around 65% of adult males have a condition called “gynecomastia.” This is essentially the medical term for “man boobs” or “moobs.” But, it’s not the only cause of this condition (and that’s where man boobs can get easier to treat).
Regardless of the cause, breast swelling is known to be embarrassing for men. Some may not want to undress at the gym or pool. They may feel insecure about being intimate with their partners. They may have bad memories of being taunted about their breasts. When they finally do get treatment, they can call it “life-changing.”
Unbeknownst to some, this condition isn’t exclusive to overweight individuals. Even physically-fit men can get man boobs.
If you’re wondering how to get rid of man boobs, we’ll explain this condition, and how to treat it, below.
What causes man boobs?
There are multiple reasons and ‘sub reasons’ that can cause excess fat and tissue on male breasts. However, this condition usually comes down to two main factors:
If the condition is caused by hormonal imbalances, then is it likely what medical professionals call, “gynecomastia.”
If the condition is caused by excess fat alone, then we would call this, “pseudogynecomastia.”
What is “gynecomastia”?
Gynecomastia is male breast enlargement as a result of too much estrogen being produced by the body. It is actually common during stages of life when hormones are known to change or be imbalanced. For example, babies can get it, as can boys going through puberty. Elderly men can also get it.
You see, male breasts are not that dissimilar from women’s breasts. They contain what’s called, “glandular breast tissue.” They even have milk ducts!
But, under normal conditions, testosterone production in males prevents them from developing female-like breasts. Having more estrogen than testosterone is what causes females to grow more glandular breast tissue.
When testosterone levels drop, male breasts can begin to enlarge or swell, just like in females. This can be due to medications, health issues, or other life changes.
This is why sometimes, it is not diet or lack of exercise causing a man to have female-like breasts.
Thankfully, this issue is not typically life-threatening, nor an indication of cancer. That said, it’s always wise to seek a doctor’s diagnosis. You’ll want to rule out the possibility of adverse health conditions, if your breasts do swell.
What is “pseudogynecomastia”?
As noted above, pseudogynecomastia is the term for male breast enlargement that is purely from excess fat. If you are diagnosed with pseudogynecomastia, you may have a much easier time reducing your man boobs, than if you have gynecomastia.
How can man boobs be treated?
How you can get rid of man boobs will depend on which type you have. The question will come down to this: is it glandular, fatty or both?
To begin with, you will need a doctor’s diagnosis to find out the answer to the above question. Most clinics offering to treat this condition will be able to help you with this. They can also recommend a treatment path to match your case. Or, they can honestly tell you if you’re not a candidate for their treatments (at least they should!).
How can gynecomastia be treated?
There are three ways to treat gynecomastia:
- Consult with a doctor to address the factor causing testosterone levels to fall. This could be from:
- Hormone-affecting medications (like anti-androgens for hair loss), chemotherapy, steroids, anxiety medications or otherwise.
- Health conditions such as hyperthyroidism, liver or kidney problems, cancers, etc.
- Wait it out. While this method can work on adult men, it usually only applies to babies or boys in puberty. It can take up to three years to go away, in some cases.
- Opt for surgical liposuction.
While you may think that surgery is an extreme solution to this problem, it’s actually becoming quite popular. In 2020, male breast reduction was the second-highest cosmetic surgery performed on men in the USA. Men’s Health has an article (and video) about it, here.
How can pseudogynecomastia be treated?
There are two main ways to treat pseudogynecomastia:
1) Diet and exercise
While we are not body-building experts, it goes without saying that if you do have man breasts from extra fat, you should begin by losing weight through diet and exercise.
You will want to work on your overall physical fitness as a start. Attempting to fix just one part of your body through exercise is usually not a good strategy. Take up cardio exercises such as jogging, swimming, cycling and so on. Or hey, try sports!
And of course, weight lifting and training will need to come into play. You’ll want to build muscle on your chest. This can involve push ups, pull ups, bench presses and the like. We recommend working with a qualified fitness trainer to learn how to do these exercises safely.
As for diet, there are many out there, and you’ll need to find the one that works for you. Or, speak with a family physician or nutritionist to discuss safe steps to losing weight.
2) Non-surgical fat removal
If you’ve done all you can to lose weight through diet and exercise, you may find that you still have stubborn pockets of fat on your body. Man boobs can be among these ‘stubborn fat’ pockets.
That’s where non-surgical, Vancouver man boob removal technologies come in. Using clinically-studied tools like CoolSculpting® or truSculpt® iD, medical aesthetics clinics can freeze or melt fat. They can do this without making a single incision in your body. This makes them safer than traditional surgery. And, they’re virtually painless too! You can go back to your normal life immediately after sessions.
Do they work? Yes! They have been proven to reduce body fat by around 20% – 25% overall (though, results can vary from person to person, always).
More specifically, fat freezing through cryolipolysis was proven to satisfy male patients with pseudogynecomastia. See this study, and this study if you want to learn the science behind how well it works on this condition.
The good thing about truSculpt® iD (the fat melter), is that it can also tighten skin. So if, after having your fat removed, you have leftover sagging skin, this may be a solution to continue treating the area without surgery.
Another non-surgical option for skin tightening is ThermiRF®. This is also a radio-frequency technology. It can replace Thermage®, Ultherapy® or other HIFU (High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound) therapies. ThermiRF® can go deeper into the skin, and give real time feedback to the doctor doing the treatment. It can be minimally invasive or non-invasive, depending on the need. You can learn more on this topic at the following article on our website:
The tricky part when using fat removal technologies to get rid of man boobs is that the handpieces need to fit into place properly. If the fat is pinchable, CoolSculpting® may be an option. If it is not, then truSculpt® iD may be better.
So, no matter which technology you go with, the doctor or aesthetician doing the procedure must be trained so as to not cause misshaping on the breasts or upper body. Always choose a qualified, physician-led clinic for these treatments. Also check if the clinic has more than one technology on hand to do the job thoroughly, if need be.
Keep in mind that non-surgical fat removal works on subcutaneous fat only. This is the fat that sits just below your skin. You can learn more about the types of body fat at the following article on our website:
Now, if your man boobs are the result of a combination of glandular breast tissue and fat, then your case may be a bit more complicated. You may need both fat removal and surgical removal of your breast tissue.
Man boobs can be conquered with Vancouver man boob removal!
Thankfully, in general, excess fat or tissue on the breasts is not something men have to live with.
As we’ve seen above, you can achieve Vancouver man boob removal with multiple methods. The key is finding out what is causing your male breast enlargement. Once you know that, you can work on male breast reduction.
Sometimes, treatment can be as simple as stopping a medication or addressing a health issue. Other times, it can involve losing weight. When advanced, medical intervention is needed, you may need surgical liposuction. Or, if you qualify, non-surgical fat removal may be a fit.