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Does Soy Really Cause Man Boobs?

45 posts in this topic

Posted

http://www.mensfitness.com/nutrition/what-to-eat/does-soy-really-cause-man-boobs

I've recently become a vegetarian, so I'm eating a pretty soy-heavy diet. But I've heard too much soy can cause man boobs in a lot of guys. Any truth to that?

— Tom N., Colorado Springs, CO

Well, all men have breasts, but what you're referring to are BIG breasts as in "man titties," "Andro-Jugs" or "tasty man treats." The medical term for large breasts in a male is "gynecomastia" ("gyneco" = ladylike, "mastia" = boobies). There are a ton of causes for gynecomastia including obesity, genetics and hormones. In addition, certain medications like cimetidine (Tagamet, a medication for acid reflux) and marijuana (well, marijuana is considered "medicine" in some states . . . not where I'm from, dammit, but that's another issue) can also cause breast tissue growth. So where does soy fit in?

Soybeans are a rich source of a set of molecules called "isoflavones." These substances have weak estrogen (female hormone) activity and have been used for years as "natural" remedies for hot flashes in menopausal women. Since male transgender patients take estrogens to stimulate breast growth, it has been assumed that soy might have the same effect. This appears to be a myth, or at least is not supported in the medical literature.

Probably the greatest amount of research on the long-term effects of soy has to do with soy infant formulas. Some kids can't tolerate regular formula and get switched to formula derived from soybeans and they'll drink this stuff from infancy to one-year of age and beyond. Some kids are raised on soy milk instead of cow's milk their whole lives. A 2004 Italian study of kids raised on soy protein formulas showed no gynecomastia, no early puberty, no changes in their bones and no other signs of screwed up hormones.

I should point out that searching "soy and gynecomastia" in the National Institute of Health database only spews out three articles, but you'll be happy to know that the reproductive tracts of male macaques were not adversely affected by ingesting soy. There is one interesting case report of a 60-year-old man who developed big ol' hooters and presented to a gland clinic for an answer. His gynecomastia eventually went away when they discovered he was drinking 3/4 of a GALLON of soy milk A DAY and told him to cut it out. With all the millions of people who ingest soy daily (there are countries where soy is a staple of the "normal" diet) the fact that there is one case report of one guy whose breast tissue was sensitive to soy products is reassuring to me.

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Posted

Not sure why this needed a CEB thread but alright.

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Posted

Not sure why this needed a CEB thread but alright.

Frightwolf needs to keep up his #1 author status SOMEHOW

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Posted

Just seems more relevant on the life board.

For what it's worth once I started eating heavy amounts of soy I got bigger breasts :daydream:

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Posted

Just seems more relevant on the life board.

For what it's worth once I started eating heavy amounts of soy I got bigger breasts :daydream:

Wouldn't that be a desirable outcome for you though? :P

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Posted

This reminds me of how some people believe creatine destroys your kidneys.

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Posted

Frightwolf needs to keep up his #1 author status SOMEHOW

It doesn't even show who it is for me anymore, so my title is basically defunct. :(

Also, medical stuff always get posted here.

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Posted

Soy makes me gassy.

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Posted

It doesn't even show who it is for me anymore, so my title is basically defunct. :(

Also, medical stuff always get posted here.

Yeah but usually medical breakthroughs and whatnot.

This just seemed really life boardy.

:shrug:

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Posted

So I guess Tofu and stuff is fine to ingest then.

Frightwolf needs to keep up his #1 author status SOMEHOW

Wouldn't that be a desirable outcome for you though? :P

Better than your shit link

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Posted

So I guess Tofu and stuff is fine to ingest then.

Better than your shit link

y u mad doe?

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Posted

Why are you so obnoxious?

He wasn't at all.

You're being obnoxious doe

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Posted

If you're a man and become a vegetarian/vegan, growing tits/a vagina is only natural.

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Posted

If you're a man and become a vegetarian/vegan, growing tits/a vagina is only natural.

I wonder if the tit/vagina growth is caused by, is the cause of, or is concurrent with the vegetarianism/veganism?

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Posted

If you're a man and become a vegetarian/vegan, growing tits/a vagina is only natural.

Why?

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Posted

Because most male vegans/vegetarians are extremely not men.

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Because most male vegans/vegetarians are extremely not men.

I feel like you're the perfect person to opine on this matter. :daydream:

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Posted

I never understood the bitterness and resentment toward vegans and vegetarians. On one hand, it's kind of funny to see people fall for blatant advertising from food companies that labels eating meat as being human and masculine. On the other hand, it's sad to see people make fun of a group of people that actually helps the environment and makes food prices cheaper.

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Posted

The vegetarians and vegans I know are pretty damn manly and strong willed.

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Posted

Oh wait Clint Eastwood is a vegan isn't he?

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