Throughout America there is a growing and unsightly trend popping out—literally—among men. The growing condition is called “Man Boobs,” or its proper name gynecomastia. This condition causes swelling or enlargement of the male breast, and effects one in four men, especially after age 50. With the rise in obesity, expect to see even more “Man Boobs” among your friends, or even you, if you’ve packed a few pounds and failed to take them back off. This condition can start as early as a male’s teenage year when puberty’s hormonal changes turn boys to men. While teenage chests usually stabilize and the condition dissipates after a few years, the same reversal isn’t true as we naturally age.
Nutrition and diet are two of the simplest ways to escape this growing problem. There are certain kinds of foods that promote this condition in men of all ages. For instance, over-consumption of soy products is known to aid in this problematic disease by raising estrogen and estradiol levels far past their normal ranges. Men having too much estrogen and a lack of testosterone will find this is a major contributing factor in the development of “Man Boobs.”
Eating more foods that boost testosterone is very beneficial to fighting this problem, including an increase in the consumption of lean cuts of red meat, as well as organic free-range eggs. These two foods contain cholesterol, which plays a crucial role in the production of testosterone in men. There are quite a few other foods that will help boost your testosterone levels as well, such as oysters, asparagus, figs, almonds, nuts, brown rice, salmon and avocados.
Try using condiments like flax seed oil and hemp seed oil in your food. This will increase your levels of omega-3 and omega-6 essential fatty acids, which also help the production of testosterone.
Eating more cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale and Brussels sprouts are beneficial to lowering chest fat, as well as eating foods with high-fiber complex carbohydrates such as oatmeal, whole grain rice, bran cereal, quinoa, spelt and buckwheat.
These types of food provide more sustained energy without the insulin and sugar spike induced by other refined carbohydrates, which cause your body to store fat and encourage development of the dreaded boobs. Having high-fiber carbohydrates also aids the digestive system and promotes efficient expulsion of waste products, helping the body be more efficient.
Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables, such as avocados, apples, apricots, bananas, blueberries, papayas, raspberries, beet greens, bok choy, carrots, collard greens, green beans, celery, sweet peppers, spinach, tomatoes, squash and zucchini. These are high in fiber, vitamins, minerals, and disease-fighting free radicals which help your body function optimally.
Doing regular exercise is another helpful way to fight drooping pec muscles, which compounds the appearance of gynecomastia. Using lighter weights and higher repetitions will give you your best results, for doing chest exercises in this fashion will help keep chest muscles looking very defined and lean. Be sure to switch up your exercise program often. This will guarantee to shock and confuse the muscles, giving you better results and keeping exercise new and exciting.
Using these two simple techniques will help tremendously in the fight against an unflattering, fat, and sagging chest. While it’s true we’re all getting older, it’s just as true that there is absolutely no reason why you have to give in to Mother Nature. Use her to your advantage, and then just stand back and wait for the compliments.
Andy Kress is a certified fitness trainer, yoga instructor and nutritional counselor in Fort Lauderdale, FL. For more nutritional tips or inspired exercise routines,reach him at 954-789-3930 or via email at [email protected]