Training, diet or surgical reduction?
What can you do against mEn boobs?
When men grow breasts, different reasons can be the root cause. For the successful treatment of enlarged male breasts, their correct differentiation is important because only with accurate diagnosis and choice of the right means men can get rid of their unloved male breasts.
Medically, enlarged male breasts are distinguished between Gynaecomastia and Lipomastia . Both forms manifest themselves in the formation of more or less prominent male breasts. However, because it is difficult to tell them apart in practice, lipomastia is also called pseudo-gynaecomastia. What is the difference?
Gynecomastia or fat? A significant difference for the treatment of an increased male breast
Gynecomastia: increased glandular tissue
In a true Gynaecomastia, the mammary gland tissue increases beyond the normal level. The extent depends on individual factors and ranges from “barely noticeable” to the formation of regular “men boobs”, which are hardly inferior to those of girls at puberty. How does it happen? The cause is usually a hormonal disorder that leads to an imbalance between oestrogens and androgens.
Such a hormonal imbalance, in turn, has very diverse and individual causes. Oestrogens from livestock in the diet are a possibility, as is the abuse of certain drugs. In addition, certain organ disorders favour enlarged male breasts, especially diseases of the kidneys. Excessive beer consumption also promotes gynaecomastia, as is commonly known.
With gynaecomastia usually only surgery helps
As a rule, the only remedy is gynaecomastia surgery. In the case of real gynaecomastia, one should not expect too much from conservative methods against male breasts. Medications for male breasts do exist, they act on the hormonal balance with the aim of bringing it back into balance. However, the success rate of gynaecomastia medications is modest.
Train away man chest?
Furthermore, the idea that you can train away a man’s chest will lead to disappointment in the vast majority of cases. I have watched men at my gym try to work out away their large chest for several months. They finally had to realize that trying to train away real gynaecomastia just doesn’t work. Even if sport itself is of course always recommended.
Training away a man’s chest is only an option if it consists of fatty tissue. And that is difficult enough in practice. If, on the other hand, it is a real gynaecomastia, and the resulting psychological stress is great enough, then eventually you will most likely end up with a surgeon. Reliably, only he can remove the male breast in case of gynaecomastia.
Lose breast fat through exercise, diet, or medical intervention
LIPOMASTIE: Man breast from fat
In fake or pseudo-gynaecomastia, on the other hand, there are no hormonal disorders. Breast line in men is only due to the storage of fat. Therefore, this type of male breast is called lipomastia.
The most common cause of lipomastia is—Who would have thought? — overweight. For men who are dissatisfied with their man boobs, therein lies good news. Because losing breast fat is much easier to do than getting rid of an enlarged male breast with true gynaecomastia. Training away a man chest consisting of fat can work if enough calories are burned and the “right” fat deposits are melted away by the body.
Lose breast fat
Whether the body actually does that is another question, despite all the supposed “exercises against men boobs”. Because you can’t control which fat deposits, the body taps into to compensate for a training-induced calorie deficit. Nevertheless, it can be said with certainty: Trying to get rid of a man’s breast without surgery promises much more success than is the case with true gynaecomastia. Because even if there is no guarantee to be able to train away a man chest: Diet as an alternative or complementary measure often works wonders.
Have breast fat removed
And if diet turns out to be an impractical or too lengthy route, there remain relatively straightforward medical interventions: the “fat dissolving injection” presented in this article, or liposuction. While both are ultima ratio, they are still preferable to surgery for gynaecomastia. Because gynaecomastia surgery is a complicated and by no means risk-free procedure.
Distinguish gynaecomastia and lipomastia
Gynaecomastia and lipomastia can be makeshiftly differentiated by palpation of the chest. If true gynaecomastia is present, then hard glandular tissue can be felt around the nipple. If you pinch yourself in this zone, you usually feel a distinct pain. If, on the other hand, the tissue consists of fat, then the breast is soft and flabby. Most likely, the man boobs are then the result of lipomastia.
Gynaecomastia is typically also accompanied by enlarged nipples. A more precise statement is possible by ultrasound. Men of a more mature age should in any case consider having one, possibly with a mammogram, as growths in the breast tissue can also indicate cancer.
Many suffer from their man boobs
MEn boobs are widespread
Male breasts due to lipomastia are a common occurrence. It is estimated that about 50% of all men are affected by lipomastia. The vast majority of them because of overweight. But whatever the specific reason, the “man boobs” have a negative psychological impact on many of those affected. This is because, as a typical female sexual characteristic, breasts are collectively considered “unmanly” in men. Those affected suffer psychologically, especially when they become the target of ridicule and teasing.
Man breast is considered unmanly
That men want to get rid of their enlarged male breasts is therefore obvious. Even many men, who otherwise have nothing for aesthetic procedures, consider going to the surgeon for this. A round breast is now once a typical female sex characteristic, hardly a man who feels really comfortable with it. Especially since such an enlarged breast can no longer be hidden under clothing. Which makes the problem a year-round affair that not only burdens you in the summer at the beach or in the open-air swimming pool.
Lipomastia in strength athletes
Lipomastia can also affect men who participate in weight training and have a correspondingly athletic physique. But who, for all their muscle mass, still carry around a certain amount of body fat. Despite all opinions to the contrary, they have virtually no influence on its distribution over individual body regions.
Bulking promotes men BOOBS
The increased fat content is particularly noticeable in strength athletes when they are bulking, as they call it, i.e. consuming calories exceeding the actual daily requirement to accelerate muscle growth. Or when they simply don’t feel like dieting in the off-season and a noticeable layer of fat gradually covers their muscles despite training.
For some, despite their imposing stature, small “love handles” form around the hips. For the others, however, the fat storage is noticeable in other places. Not infrequently as an enlarged male breast in the sense of lipomastia. As strength athletes know very well, the idea of being able to train away a man’s chest by means of a few extra sessions in the gym is almost impossible to realize. Fat deposits cannot be specifically trained away.
There are neither specific exercises against man boobs nor a certain type of sport against man boobs that would be particularly promising. Of course, an increased number of calories consumed during exercise boosts fat burning in general. And with it you will also partly get rid of your man chest. But to what extent, unfortunately, remains open.
Some people certainly succeed in getting rid of the problem in this way; others, however, achieve only moderate success in training away the man boobs. This is because the body autonomously decides which fat depots to create or increase in order to store excess calories from food. And which he later taps to mobilize energy that he no longer receives from food as part of a diet.
Six Packs are made in the Kitchen (flat breasts too)
“Six Packs are made in the Kitchen, not in the Gym,” is why the athletic gentlemen at my gym say the same thing. Diet makes the difference, not training. Often enough, it is even the case that of all people, the hard training “hulks” who eat very high-calorie food for their muscle growth, suffer from belly fat and lipomastia. If they want to get rid of their man boobs, along with all other excess fat, then “cutting” is the order of the day: strict dieting with daily calorie deficits of 500Kcal and above. Over a longer period of time, typically 12 weeks and more.
As athletes in women’s sports find out, regularly to their dismay, this does have an impact on breast size. Because a permanent calorie deficit forces the body to tap into its fat reserves, and pathological fat distribution disorders aside, this also affects breast fat. No wonder, then, that in sports like bodybuilding or women’s fitness, where muscular definition and an extremely low body fat percentage are crucial to success, many female athletes turn to imposing breast implants.
But as mentioned before: in rare cases even a strict diet is of no use, and the body breaks down fat everywhere but on the breasts; and in many more cases the “strict” diet is not strict enough to make the body break down its breast fat.
One such case is my patient Max, who is the subject of the following.
Get rid of man chest thanks to lipolysis
Max Goes for the fat Dissolving Injection
Max (of course, that’s not his real name) is a man in his mid-40s, tall, with broad shoulders, imposing arms, and a noticeably swollen chest. His problem was already a little apparent under his T-shirt, but became immediately clear as soon as he took it off: at the lower edge of his large pectoral muscle (Musculus pectoralis maior), there was a distinct bulge on both sides.
Keys points to lipomastia
The nipple was perfectly palpable, but the remaining tissue around it was clearly soft. No doubt about it: it was fatty tissue. Max suffered from lipomastia. The excess fat on the breast bothered him, but liposuction was still out of the question for him. Not for price reasons alone. In his opinion, the costs would be disproportionate to the result.
“Of course, I want to get rid of my man boobs. And if I put my mind to it and train hard and follow a strict diet, the fat will go away like that,” he told me. But he lacks the ambition for that at the moment. However, as an experienced strength athlete, he had no illusions about the prospects of being able to train away lipomastia: “If these fat pads are to go, then only 3 things help: 1. diet 2. diet and 3. diet,” he said with a laugh.
Max opts for the fAT DISSOLVING injection
But now he had heard about the fat dissolving injection and its possibilities. And wanted to know if this would give him a low-cost option for getting rid of his man boob. I confirmed this to him. Due to the clear presence of lipomastia, injection lipolysis (as the fat-away injection is medically correctly called) should be able to provide good services here. Especially since the two fat pads on the breast were not particularly large and localized. I expected 2 injections per session on both sides, and probably 3 sessions total.
The costs that I calculated for the entire treatment of his lipomastia were thus around 2,400 euros, spread over 6 months (the treatment is carried out at intervals of 8 weeks). Max thought that was fine. With costs in this amount, the treatment of his lipomastia would be well below those of liposuction. As for the first treatment session, in the video you can see the preparation and administration of the injections. Predominantly, a 5-head syringe attachment with 5 30G cannulas was used, thanks to which the active ingredient could be quickly injected into the entire fatty tissue. At individual points, I then additionally injected with a single cannula.
With the fat dissolving injection against man boobs
Video: Lipolysis at LIPOMASTIE
Fat dissolving injection for lipomastia
After the 1st treatment
By his account, Max survived the first treatment well. He had previously been superficially anaesthetized with a mixture of lidocaine cream. I left the anaesthetic cream to act under occlusion by covering the area coated with it with kitchen foil. After an exposure time of 20 minutes, I started the injections. According to his statement, Max did not feel any pain during the injection. Instead, a short time after the treatment, the burning sensation typical of injection lipolysis set in at the treated areas, associated with significant swelling and haematomas.
The next day, Max sent me 2 photos. The haematomas caused by the 20 injections on each side are clearly visible. Redness and swelling are equally evident, a condition that experience shows will last 3–6 days.
I had recommended Max not to do any sports during the next 2-3 days. Of course, he did not comply.
His chest had been overly sensitive, he said. Bench press with weights would have been possible without any problems, but jogging on the treadmill he had to stop after 10 minutes.
Chest rubbing against the jersey had become exceedingly uncomfortable, Max said. Instead, he said, he switched to the cross trainer and spent 45 minutes there, with no complaints.
If you are reading this, then you should not take Max as an example. Because the areas treated with the fat-away injection for several days after the treatment very sensitive, which may also affect your well-being and performance. It is better to avoid sports and intensive activities during this time.
Remove enlarged male breast—Update
The 2nd treatment
At the end of September, a little later than planned, Max came to my office for the 2nd treatment of his lipomastia (male breast).
He had become noticeably slimmer since the 1st session. I guess he lost about 4–5 kilos. “Make way for Oktoberfest,” he said with a laugh. Moreover, his man boobs seemed smaller than last time. I took the tape measure and checked the circumference. A good 1 cm less. That was remarkable.
The success of our first treatment? That would be nice, but I don’t think so. Max’s general weight loss probably contributed more. I now know the results of injection lipolysis well enough from numerous treatments to be able to form an opinion about the successes that can be expected after the initial treatment. And such a decline after the first time is unlikely.
Max’s body simply relied more heavily on the fat deposits in the chest area when breaking down fat reserves during weight loss. So, our treatment with the fat dissolving injection had a good “tailwind”. After all, this was a good starting point for the follow-up treatment.
In conversation, Max emphasized the psychological aspect of the treatment, which may have helped: “After the first treatment I found it easier than usual to watch my diet. Because I thought to myself, if I’m going to have the procedure against my man boobs, then I would rather not diminish the success by continuing to eat incessantly. On the contrary, I wanted to support the effect by consciously avoiding sweets and generally eating less in the evening after the workout.”
In the 2nd treatment session, I repeated exactly the protocol of the initial treatment: two vials of active ingredient on each side. The next treatment was again scheduled in 8-12 weeks interval, so it was scheduled for December.
However, the third treatment did not take place. Max was pleased with his interim progress, but wanted to shed a few pounds in general and possibly continue treatment after that. So, unfortunately, I can’t document a complete treatment cycle in this post as I had originally planned. However, I hope that the impressions so far will nevertheless give the reader some information about what the fat-away injection against male breasts (lipomastia) is capable of and where the limits of the therapy lie.