Here Are Foods You Should Avoid That Can Cause Gynecomastia

Although many people assume that the presence of “man boobs” is a result of weight gain or age, in reality, Gynecomastia, the condition that causes male breast tissue to develop, can affect healthy boys and men of any age. Gynecomastia is caused by an imbalance of hormones—specifically an increased presence of estrogen and / or reduced amount of testosterone.

Although in most instances this alteration of hormones is caused by natural changes, such as puberty, and therefore cannot be avoided, foods that are high in estrogen can modify your hormone levels, potentially worsening the effects of Gynecomastia. As a result, the following foods should be avoided in order to ensure that your testosterone levels are not negatively impacted.


Soy has a high phytoestrogen content and as a result, it is believed that its consumption may cause the same changes to your body as estrogen.

Flax Seeds

Flax seeds are high in soy and therefore contain phytoestrogen. While this can be very beneficial to women, it should be avoided by men in order to prevent Gynecomastia.

Multigrain Bread

Although multigrain bread is touted as the healthier bread option, in some instances, it has a large concentration of phytoestrogens.

Dairy Milk

The estrogen found in cow’s milk is identical to that found in the human body. As a result, when consuming dairy milk, you will ingest additional estrogen. Since milk-producing cows are female, no testosterone is found in dairy milk. It is estimated that dairy accounts for 60-80% of ingested female hormones.


Like milk, there is a high presence of estrogen in eggs. In fact, it is estimated that eggs are responsible for 10-20% of a human’s hormone intake. While men that are interested in body-building often consume a large number of eggs to help them build muscle, it is important to recognize that their consumption may worsen the development of Gynecomastia.


Meat consumption can also contribute to the development of Gynecomastia due to its high levels of estradiol and estrone. Fatty tissues, in particular are believed to be the main culprits. It is advisable to be selective when choosing your cut of meat, avoiding the liver, or fat of calves, for example.


Due to the presence of xenoestrogens (man-made chemicals containing estrogen) in the environment and estradiol in bodies of water, the fish you eat may contain high levels of female hormones.

Protein Powders and Bars

While whey and casein protein powders and bars are popular amongst men due to their ability to help build muscle, they are derived from milk and consequently, contain estrogen. Although its concentration of female hormones will be much less than in milk itself, it is advisable to choose protein powders and bars that are plant-based.


Hops, an important ingredient in beer, contains 8-prenylnaringenin (8-PN), a phytoestrogen that is 50 times stronger than soy.  In addition, alcohol lowers testosterone levels, which means that beer consumption may contribute to the hormonal imbalance that causes Gynecomastia.

Although many of the aforementioned foods have a number of health benefits, it is important to be aware that their consumption may exacerbate Gynecomastia.




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