Often breast reduction is thought of as a surgery reserved for women. However, one may be surprised to learn that a fair number of men also undergo the procedure, known as male breast reduction. In general, overweight individuals tend to have excess fatty tissues on the chest than men who exercise frequently and therefore, have pronounced pectoral muscles. However, all men actually have a small amount of glandular breast tissue as part of their normal structure. In certain cases, men can experience an increase in the volume of breast tissue. The condition of male breasts becoming enlarged is known as Gynecomastia.
Gynecomastia can have devastating effects on a man’s confidence and overall quality of life. Many men hesitate and feel embarrassed to participate in social situations like going to the gym or the beach.
It is critical to note that exercise may generate a slight improvement for some men who are overweight, but these efforts alone will not resolve the issue of enlarged male breasts completely.
What causes gynecomastia?
A number of factors can lead to the development of gynecomastia:
Hormonal Imbalance – An imbalance between the sex hormones testosterone and estrogen in the male body can cause gynecomastia. If estrogen levels in men are too high than testosterone levels or there is less production of testosterone, it causes gynecomastia.
Obesity – Being overweight can increase levels of estrogen, which cause breast tissue to grow.
Age – Age also contributes to the development of gynecomastia.
Newborn baby- It can affect newborn baby boys, as estrogen passes through the placenta from the mother to the baby. Usually, this is temporary and the swollen breast tissues go away within two or three weeks after birth.
Puberty- During puberty, boys hormone levels vary. When the level of testosterone drops, estrogen can cause breast tissues to grow.
Older Age – Men produce less testosterone with age. The body fat tends to be more in older people, which can result in more estrogen to be produced. Ultimately, it leads to excess breast tissue growth.
Herbal Products – Using herbal products made with plant based oils such as tea tree or lavender can increase the chances of having gynecomastia.
Can exercise get rid of gynecomastia?
Exercise can help reduce the amount of male breast fatty tissue in overweight individuals. However, when the appearance of abnormally large breasts is created by an accumulation of glandular tissues (known as true gynecomastia), relying only on exercising will not be sufficient enough to fully resolve the issue.
The reason being that the breast tissues do not respond to diet and exercises as gynecomastia is a medical condition and not just the result of being out of shape. Moreover, the main cause of gynecomastia is commonly caused by hormonal imbalances, it will generally not be affected by exercise.
Exercises to help reduce the appearance of gynecomastia
If someone is out of shape, exercise can help minimize the existing gynecomastia. Some exercises to reduce the appearance of gynecomastia are listed below:
- Doing cardio exercises daily can increase the tone and size of the chest muscles
- Jogging or walking burns more significant amounts of fat and assists to lose chest fat more efficiently
- Doing push-ups will target the pectoralis muscle, which gives definition and contour to the chest
- Weight training can tone and carve the chest muscles
How is gynecomastia treated?
The male breast reduction surgery is considered as the most effective and comprehensive treatment for the males suffering from gynecomastia. For an early stage, medications can help reduce gynecomastia. But usually scarring occurs after about 12 months. So, medications are not likely to be effective and surgical removal is the only possible treatment.
An integral part of the most effective treatment to correct gynecomastia is liposuction. In this process, the surgeon will make tiny incisions around the areola, then he will drain out the excess amount of fat using a metal cannula. While the liposuction process is over, the surgeon will extract the underlying glandular tissue through the incision. Thereafter, the surgeon will close the incision.
Who is the ideal candidate for gynecomastia surgery?
The ideal candidate for gynecomastia surgery include:
- Healthy people who do not suffer from have a life-threatening illness or medical condition which can hamper the healing and recovery
- Non smokers and individuals who do not take drugs
- People who wants to restore their lost confidence
- Men who feels that their breasts are too large
- Someone who has great skin elasticity and
- Someone who experiences physical discomfort caused by gynecomastia
- Individuals who Aaren’t overweight or obese
- Who keeps realistic expectations of the results
These factors make up for the ideal candidate who can undergo gynecomastia surgery. However, a surgeon is the right person to guide if anyone can undergo the surgery.
For men with true glandular gynecomastia, exercise will not be enough to resolve the issue. In certain cases, addressing the hormonal imbalances or altering the medications may thereby result in an improvement, while other patients may require surgical treatment to correct their gynecomastia.