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Exploring Body Image: Navigating Men's Challenges and Perspectives

"You’re too skinny.", "Lose that baby fat already, boy, you’re almost 17!", "No one would date a muscular guy like you. These are some of the comments that every man must have heard at least once in his life. These are just a few of them. When it comes to people commenting on bodies, the list is endless. Body image is one’s thoughts, feelings, and viewpoint about their own body. However, due to comments, beauty standards, and personal thinking, one can develop a negative body image issue. Read on to discover some of the best books on body image for men.

Popular cultures and the media cover only women facing body image issues. However, men also face body image issues. These issues can lead to a number of physical and psychological concerns.

Countless men indulge in fad dieting, extensive training, and steroid abuse. Many of these men fall prey to psychological and eating disorders like body dysmorphia, bulimia, and anorexia.

A number of authors and healthcare professionals have written about body image issues in men.

Here are some of the books on body image issues in men:

Being You

For a number of men, body image issues start at a very young age.

Young boys feel pressured to be athletic and muscular. The desire to attain such a body can drive them to harm their physical and mental well-being.

It is difficult for teen boys to fathom the damage this can cause to themselves.

Authored by Charlotte Markey, Daniel Hart, and Douglas N. Zacher, ‘Being You’ is an insightful read filled with topics like puberty, diet, exercise, and social media, as well as real-life stories from young boys.

Surprise your teen son with this self-help book. Trust me, it’ll be a great help for them!

Making Weight

Negative body image issues affect millions of women belonging to different age groups every year. However, the section of individuals that we often overlook regarding this issue are men.

A number of men suffer from eating disorders and self-abusive behavior. With the help of a number of doctors and health professionals, ‘Making Weight’ talks about ways to enhance self-image, steroid abuse, and a section for women who want to help men enhance their body image.

It also contains anecdotes about their own patients and their journey towards overcoming their negative body image.

The Adonis Complex

Titled after the Greek god ‘Adonis’, an epitome of the exquisite standard of masculinity, the book talks about body image problems in men.

Some of the subjects covered are compulsive weightlifting, exercising, eating disorders, beauty standards, and steroid abuse. The work uncovers a hidden syndrome that afflicts thousands of men and boys.

Performing Masculinity

Masculinity is a matter found in every genre and aspect of humankind, even in present-day computer games!

‘Performing Masculinity’ is a piece of work that talks about the signs of masculinity found in a wide variety of contexts like literature, ballet, sports, music, and film.

I’ll cover you in $20 bills.

As evocative as the title sounds, the book covers the lives of men who make their living fostering the male image. Authored by Michael Rivers, the book talks about the male body beauty business.

It contains the anecdotes of 17 men working in different professions like plastic surgeons, female impersonators, porn stars, fitness trainers, models, athletes, and erotic masseuses.


We have all encountered body image issues at some point. Body image has little to do with your actual appearance. It’s a picture created from perceptions and emotions.

Reading some of the books would help one overcome negative body image as well as show the different facades of body image in men.

However, if you’re still unable to overcome body image issues, seeking professional help is an option. There are a number of counselors and psychologists trained in the field of body image.

Written by: Deepdisha Sarkar

Edited by: Aniket Joshi

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