Gynecomastia, commonly known as “man boobs,” is a medical condition that affects many men. It is characterised by the enlargement of the breast tissue in men, which can lead to discomfort and self-consciousness. Man boobs are a common cause of low self-esteem, and according to a review by the Cleveland Clinic Journal of Medicine, man boobs affect up to 50% of all men.

If you are experiencing gynecomastia symptoms, such as breast tenderness or enlargement, it is important to consult with a doctor. They can help determine the cause of your condition and recommend the appropriate treatment. In some cases, gynecomastia may be caused by underlying medical conditions, such as hormonal imbalances, and may require medication or other interventions.

What Causes Man Boobs?

Understanding the root cause of man boobs is crucial in addressing this issue. While excess body fat over the pectoral muscles may be the culprit for some, those who maintain a healthy weight may be experiencing a hormonal imbalance. Specifically, breast tissue growth can occur when there is an imbalance between testosterone and oestrogen in the body.

Typically, men produce higher levels of testosterone, which prevents breast tissue growth. However, when hormonal levels become imbalanced, increased growth of breast tissue can occur. Gynecomastia can be triggered by lower testosterone levels as a result of certain medications, illicit drugs, illnesses and age. This is often referred to as the male menopause, but in some cases, the exact cause of the hormonal imbalance is unknown.

Gynecomastia Symptoms

Here are seven common gynecomastia symptoms to look out for:

1. Swollen or enlarged breast gland tissue

2. Tenderness or sensitivity in the breast area

3. Uneven breast tissue growth, with one breast appearing larger than the other

4. Nipple discharge (in rare cases)

5. Breast pain or discomfort

6. A rubbery or firm feel to the breast tissue underneath the nipple

7. The appearance of a rounded or protruding breast contour.

It’s important to note that some men with gynecomastia may not experience any symptoms at all, while others may experience multiple symptoms. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s best to consult with a doctor to determine the underlying cause and explore treatment options.

Is It Possible to Get Rid of Man Boobs?

If your man boobs are due to being overweight or obese, it’s essential to start with a healthy diet and increased physical activity. A balanced diet and calorie deficit can lead to weight loss, and you may be able to lose enough weight to get rid of excess fat in the chest area. Incorporating regular exercise, including both cardio and muscle-building exercises, can help you build up your pectoral muscles and potentially eliminate man boobs in the process.

Is There a Link Between Alcohol Consumption and Gynaecomastia

Numerous studies have examined the relationship between alcohol consumption and testosterone. Research has strongly indicated that alcohol consumption is associated with lower testosterone levels. This could lead to a hormonal imbalance and increase the risk of developing gynecomastia.  

While the exact mechanisms behind the relationship between alcohol consumption and gynecomastia are not fully understood, some researchers believe that alcohol may cause a suppression of plasma testosterone, leading to an increase in oestrogen levels and a decrease in testosterone levels. This hormonal imbalance can contribute to the development of gynecomastia.

Exercises to Get Rid of Man Boobs

A range of cardio and muscle-building exercises that target the chest area may help you lose excess weight and build up your pectoral muscles, potentially eliminating man boobs in the process. One of the most effective exercises to get rid of man boobs is the chest press. This exercise works by targeting the chest muscles and increasing their size, which helps to reduce the appearance of breast tissue. To perform this exercise, lie on a bench with a dumbbell in each hand. Press the weights up and down in a controlled motion, being careful not to arch your back or strain your shoulders.

Another great exercise for reducing man boobs is the push-up. Push-ups work by engaging the chest muscles and helping to tone and firm the chest area. To perform this exercise, start in a plank position with your hands shoulder-width apart. Lower your body down to the ground, keeping your elbows close to your body. Push yourself back up to the starting position, being careful not to lock your elbows.

If you’re looking for a more intense workout, you may want to try the bench press. This exercise involves lifting heavier weights and can help build muscle mass in the chest area. To perform this exercise, lie on a bench with a barbell or dumbbells. Lower the weights down to your chest, being careful not to bounce the weights off your chest. Push the weights back up to the starting position, exhaling as you lift.

Gynecomastia Surgery 

While exercises can be effective in reducing the appearance of man boobs, they may not be enough for severe cases of gynecomastia. In these instances, gynecomastia surgery may be necessary. Gynecomastia surgery in the UK is a common procedure that involves removing excess breast tissue and fat from the chest area. 

This plastic surgery procedure has a low rate of risks and complications and a high success rate. The cost will vary depending on the type of procedure, and you can expect to pay between £3500 and £5000.

Fat Reduction Treatments

Fat-dissolving injections such as Aqualyx (also known as injection lipolysis) treatment can dissolve small amounts of subcutaneous fat, which is then released naturally through the lymphatic system. At our London clinic, many of our patients have reported positive outcomes following fat-dissolving injections in the chest and other areas of the body, including the stomach. 

This treatment can be administered in under an hour, and the treatment involves injecting a solution directly into the fatty tissue. This causes the fat cells to rupture, and they are then eliminated from the body naturally via the lymphatic system. It is a relatively painless procedure and requires no downtime, making it a popular option for those who want to avoid invasive surgery.

While Aqualyx is considered a safe treatment, there are some potential side effects, such as bruising, swelling, and discomfort in the injection site. In addition to Aqualyx, there are other non-invasive fat reduction treatments available, such as Cool Sculpting and shockwave therapy. These treatments literally freeze and break down fat cells, and research has indicated they are effective for reducing stubborn fat in targeted areas.

Ultimately, whether or not Aqualyx or another fat reduction treatment is right for you will depend on a variety of factors, including your overall health, the amount of fat you want to reduce, and your aesthetic goals. A consultation with a qualified medical professional can help you determine the best course of action for achieving your desired results.

Testosterone Replacement Therapy

Testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) is a treatment for men with low testosterone levels that works by replacing the testosterone that your body is no longer producing in sufficient quantities. Low testosterone levels can lead to a range of symptoms, including reduced muscle mass, increased body fat, and low libido. TRT is a safe and effective treatment, and it can also help with gynecomastia.

It can be administered in several ways, including gels, patches, injections, and pellets. If you are considering TRT, it is important to speak to a qualified healthcare provider who can evaluate your individual situation and determine if it is a safe and appropriate treatment option for you.


If man boobs are making you feel self-conscious, contact Harley Street MD today for a free, no-obligation consultation to find out the most appropriate treatment options for your individual needs.

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