The Elite Physique

What Causes Man Boobs

Learn Exactly What Causes Man Boobs

what causes man boobs

You have man boobs (moobs).  Your moobs make it difficult for you to take your shirt off at the pool or lake, during sex, and other activities.  For men, the chest is a major focal point.  However, this cruel curse of having breasts take away the simple pleasures in life.  But what exactly are man boobs and what causes man boobs? The medical term for it is gynecomastia.  It’s a condition in men where they develop breasts.  It will show as extra tissue around the nipple area to more prominent breasts.

What Causes Man Boobs?

It’s not just weight gain.  It’s is an embarrassing condition caused by a hormone imbalance between testosterone and female hormone, estrogen.  The estrogen is what causes the breast tissue to grow.  All men produce some estrogen.  Most men usually have higher testosterone levels, which typically stops the estrogen from causing breast development.  However, if you have low test levels and higher estrogen levels, you can develop those breasts.  Let’s discuss a few of the causes…

Newbie Boys

New born baby boys can be affected by this condition due to the estrogen being passed through the placenta to the infant.  This is a temporary condition and will go away in 2-3 weeks.  Easy fix here.

Puberty Moobs

Boy’s hormone levels vary during puberty.  If the level of testosterone drops, then estrogen can cause breast growth.  This usually stabilized as the boy gets older and the hormones level out and become more stable.  Again, another natural and easy fix.  However, keep reading and you’ll learn you’ll have to stay on top of your health to prevent them in the coming years.

Overweight Causes Man Boobs

Poor eating habits increase fat.  The extra fat causes an imbalance of a hormone called leptin and can hinder the production of testosterone.  Being overweight and obese is usually the cause of man boobs in men from the ages of 20-50. The extra, unnecessary, pounds can increase the levels of estrogen.  Enzyme from belly fat can also cause man boobs by increasing the aromatase enzyme.  For some men, losing body fat and working out can help, but it may not always improve the condition.


Aging brings all sorts of new changes.  Men may have to embrace balding, bulging belly, mid-life crisis, and finally, nice firm breasts!  As the aging process continues, men produce less testosterone.  In addition, most men usually put on a little weight and even develop a dad bod.  Weight, combined with lower testosterone produces more estrogen.  This combination will result in man boobs as well.

So, it can start at birth and just disappear.  Then puberty hits and they balance out again.  But you had a lot of fun in your younger years and now you’ll struggle with man boobs from 20-50, and then aging hits.  Around the age of 50, testosterone in men drops rapidly.  In the following years test levels plummet another 20-50%.  As you age, it becomes more difficult to build and keep a muscular and ripped chest.

Alcohol Moobs

It’s not just hormones!  Did you know that drinking alcohol can cause man boobs?  It’s nothing new.  Drinking too much alcohol can cause weight gain. However, particularly, hoppy beers have also been found to increase estrogen levels, stimulating the production of breast tissue.  There you go fella’s, what y’all have always loved, boobs and beer.  Enjoy!

Natural Oil-Based Products

Your beard oil could be sissifying you.  Yeah, might check out that lavender and thistle bread oil.  It could have a very dark secret, non-beard related.  Studies show that using products containing natural oil-based ingredients such as tea tree oil, and lavender can cause a hormone imbalance when absorbed into your bloodstream due to their estrogen-like properties.  But if you like a beautiful bread with those feminine breasts, go for it!


Yes, steroids can help you build muscle, and melons.  Anabolic steroids are basically synthetic testosterone, and some can be converted into estrogen in the body. The end result, gynaecomastia, commonly known as man boobs.  But you don’t take “steroids”, you take injectable testosterone, right?  When you inject test, your testosterone levels will rise.  In addition, your female hormones will increase too. It’s not an escape.  You are just helping those breasts along and will soon be in a D-cup.

Poor Diet Causes Man Boobs

Your diet may be causing your man boobs. You may think you are eating within a caloric-range, carb-range, or fat-range.  However, your diet may be the key source to your malnutrition, lack of essential nutrients in proper amounts.  Unless you are aware of what you are eating and eating BALANCED meals consistently, you can become malnourished.  When your body is malnourished, it’s actually starving, starving for nourishment in the form of vitamins and minerals.

When you deprive your body of proper nutrition in the form of balanced meals, your testosterone levels drop and the estrogen levels stay the same. In the end, you have a hormonal imbalance leading to man boobs. Resuming proper nutrition won’t make your gyno disappear.  It’s a hormonal imbalance combined with excess body fat.

Insulin resistance can also contribute to gynecomastia.  Regardless if you have dieted off body fat or follow the ketogenic diet.  If you go back to your old habits of eating carbs too often and start to gain that spare tire or muffin top again, you are just entered insulin resistance again.   As long as your insulin levels stay high, your body will naturally respond by clinging to its extra fat and man boobs!


Can smoking weed cause man boobs?  You bet your sweet breasts it can.  Mary Jane can act as an estrogen simulator and decrease testosterone production in men.  Innovations Medical states, “according to studies performed by the National Institute of Health, recent studies have shown a link between THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, and the development of enlarged male breast tissue. This is because THC lowers testosterone levels. When a man’s testosterone level is lower than his level of estrogen, the breast tissue begins to grow.”

Soy Protein Causes Man Boobs

In the past, soy protein has been hyped-up as the perfect protein for vegans and vegetarians, and even bodybuilders.  New studies show that unfermented soy such as soy protein drinks, soy milk, soy in vegetarian foods, soy oil, etc. are not only unhealthy, but can also cause harm!

Dr. Mercola has released data showing that soy consumption (Herbalife protein, soy milk, tofu, infant formula…) is linked directly to gyno, thyroid dysfunction, digestive issues, reproductive issues, infertility, immune system malfunctions, cognitive decline, malnutrition, cancer, and even heart disease. How about that, Barbie?

The primary problem with soy is that it is one of the foods highest in phytoestrogens (plant-produced estrogens), including daidzein and genistein. It’s a fact, more estrogen in the body is linked to infertility, low sex drive, and man boobs.  Just because you have man boobs doesn’t mean you have to shop in the lingerie department.  Let’s discuss some of your options…

Treatment for Man Boobs

For treatment, see your general physician to discuss options.  He or she may recommend surgery to remove the excess breast tissue.  Typically, such procedures are not covered on insurance since they are considered cosmetic and not a necessity for health or survival.  Medication can be used to adjust hormones.  However, when you tinker with one hormone, the other will react.  It’s a slippery slope.

Tips That Can Help

Now that you know what causes man boobs you can try to alter your lifestyle.   You can work on reducing chest fat, but it’s going to do little for the hormonal imbalance you created that resulted in your man boobs.

Eat Better

Eating better, but a nutritional standpoint, will help reduce body fat and build muscle if you are weight training.  Choosing more non-starchy veggies, complete proteins, soy-free proteins such as whey, as well as organic choices is a great start to getting in shape.  You need to give up eating out, fast food, pre-packaged, and other franken-food if you want to lose fat and build a fit and strong body.

Omit Alcohol

Alcohol is poison.  Not only that, it’s high in calories.  Drinking alcohol can lead to weight gain and insulin resistance.  Another punch is that alcohol lowers your testosterone levels, which can lead to gyno. So, how much alcohol can you safely have and not make your man boobs worse?  Zero to none.


Exercising can help with some weight loss.  If you have some weight on you and man boobs, you need to workout at least 5 days a week for 45-60 minutes.

Having a strong bench press is a good.  A typical 30-year-old man should be able to bench press 90% of his body weight.  Therefore, a 180-pound man should be able to bench press 162 pounds.

Men have more upper body strength than women.  However, if you have gyno, you may have to think otherwise.  A typical 30-year-old man should be able to do 20 pushups, non-stop, easily!  If not, you may have too must of the lady hormone.


Cardio doesn’t burn fat, unless your body is in ketosis.  What cardio will do is burn calories.  However, those calories come from everywhere, not just fat.  In essence, if you rely on cardio for your fat loss, you may just end up a smaller, unfit, version of yourself.  You need to diet, train, and do cardio.  It’s a trifecta.

Final Thoughts on What Causes Man Boobs…

All the above, poor diet, alcohol, medications, antibiotics, etc. can all hinder the detoxification process to breakdown estrogen and encourage man boobs.  It’s going to take a clean diet void of processed foods.  Avoid the alcohol, SOY protein, and taking gear.  Lose weight the right way and you can manage your moobs.  Now, check below for my free natural bodybuilding guide…


Not so Fast Sunshine... I Have Something for You...

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Karen Sessions NSCA-CPT

Not so Fast Sunshine... I Have Something for You...

My name is Karen Sessions and I am a life-time natural female bodybuilder, multi-certified fitness instructor, author, specialist in performance nutrition, and a success coach. I've been in the fitness industry since 1988! I teach people Just Like You how to transform their bodies, get in shape, build muscle, lose fat and compete in Bodybuilding, Physique, and Figure Competitions. When you have the CORRECT information you can have total confidence and turn your dreams into reality... and I can help transform YOUR body. I have helped THOUSANDS of clients reach their goals and I can help you, too. Be sure to grab my free gift above so you can start moving toward your goal.

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