This article exists as part of the online archive for HuffPost Australia, which closed in 2021.

How To Make Your Man Boobs History

Warning: you might need to lay off the coffee.
Also known as moobs.
Also known as moobs.

Ever since Bill Shorten took to pounding the pavement, 'man boobs' have been a hot topic of discussion (and there is a sentence this reporter never thought she'd have to write).

But 'moobs' have been a source of fascination long before Shorten brought them once again into the limelight. (The last time they roused this much attention in the Australian political arena was when Mark Latham set off a similar booby trap in 2004, but that's another story).

Politicians aside, what's the go with man boobs?

Firstly, it's important to note not all man boobs are the same, and there are two very distinct reasons behind what may be causing them.

The first is the recognised medical condition gynaecomastia, which Andrology Australia defines as "the enlargement of male breast tissue".

Appearing as "a rubbery or firm mass" gynaecomastia is not cancerous, and involves the enlargement of glandular tissue, not fat tissue. This is important to note as men who are overweight can sometimes give the appearance of having 'man boobs' due to an excess of fat tissue. This is not the same thing as gynaecomastia.

An example of gynaecomastia in a 17 year old male.
An example of gynaecomastia in a 17 year old male.

The second cause of 'man boobs' comes from lifestyle choices; namely, eating unhealthy foods, slouching and failing to exercise. Unlike gynaecomastia, these symptoms can be rectified without medical intervention.

"The best way to get rid of them is to go super clean on the diet. Basically meat and veg with some fruit," Matthew Boon, director of SigFit Bondi, told The Huffington Post Australia.

"I would recommend staying away from the processed stuff and staying away from anything with estrogen in the food, the biggest one being the soy. Soy milk, soy beans, and tofu are all big offenders.

"In terms of shaping up physically, I'd throw in some resistance training, focusing on your chest and shoulders to really get that muscle build up. This can help reduce the effect of man boobs."

Boon also recommends reducing the intake of inflammatory foods like sugar, alcohol and milk. One easy way to dramatically reduce your intake (of sugar and milk, at least) is to seriously cut back on your trips to the local barista.

Time to cut back on the creamy coffee, folks.
Time to cut back on the creamy coffee, folks.

"People drink way too much coffee," Boon said. "It's not bad for you but people have too much of it. Try instead to have just one long black a day rather than five flat whites a day.

"Start doing some weights training and stop drinking so much [alcohol] as well." ​

For those who have heard about the apparent benefits of supplements, Boon said for most people, that would be putting the cart way before the horse.

"I wouldn't even start thinking about that until you are well and truly on a dedicated fitness regime," Boon said.

"I've had a fair few clients with man boobs, and usually, they were people who have poor posture, haven't done anything physical for a really long time and eat really bad foods.

"It's one of those things, a clean diet and a good training regime will sort 90 percent of people out​."

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