What Is Bigorexia? | Male Body Image

male body image

The term ‘Bigorexia’ or muscle dysmorphia describes a need to gain extremely large muscle mass for aesthetic purposes. Men’s fitness magazines and social media have helped to perpetuate the desire to workout and eat for aesthetics. It is important to understand that being big and muscular at the gym does not mean someone has muscle dysmorphia.

Males who have muscle dysmorphia are characterized by the constant desire to be bigger, with obsessive examination and critique of their physique, and obsessive dedication to working out. Men with bigorexia will often still view themselves as small regardless of how muscular they may be, and will likely become agitated, angry and frustrated when they miss a workout session or do not eat according to their strict diet. It is estimated that 10% of men who frequent the gym have muscle dysmorphia.

Bigorexia In Gay Men

Studies have supported the idea that homosexual males are more likely to strive for muscular physiques and will go to the gym with the purpose of putting on muscle. Overall lower body dissatisfaction and the desire to appear both thin and muscular or toned is more common in homosexual men than in heterosexual men. Interestingly, studies found no correlation between male sexuality and the tendency to compulsively exercise.


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Treatment Of Bigorexia

If you are tired of having poor self-esteem, anxiety or worry about your appearance, and are unable to balance the enjoyment of working out with the stress of body insecurity, you may struggle with muscle dysmorphia. Our team at WeightMatters can help you find balance again, and support you in creating a better relationship with your body.