More articles by

Dr D Narayana Reddy
Dr D Narayana Reddy


High points

The erogenous zones in the male chest have an important role in foreplay

Doc, my wife is acting funny?” said an agitated Sekhar. “She wants to play with my nipples. She says that she gets thrilled on doing that. I keep telling that I am not a homo and she should not do that. The funny thing is when she plays with them they become erect and I feel embarrassed.”

Sekhar quizzed me further. “Tell me doctor, why do men have nipples? Isn’t it a female privilege?”

This is one of the most often repeated questions in my columns.Probably the only man who has no doubts is the well known Bollywood hero who is popular for his bare-chested showmanship.

When William H. Masters and Virginia E. Johnson, the pioneering sex researchers, observed hundreds of men reach orgasm during their classic study. They noticed that, in most of them, the nipples got erect and often got swollen late in the game. In many cases, the swelling did not recede until hours later. In fact, foreplay and male nipples went hand in hand.

JUST SEX Illustration: Bhaskaran

Unfortunately, most heterosexual men get prickly about having their breasts stimulated. As the connotation goes, anything to do with the breast has to be the woman’s prerogative, does that necessarily imply that they are… girls? In fact, sexological research has clearly established that the male nipples are one of the important erogenous zones.

One of the greatest assumptions and the biggest mistake people make is “only women should have nipples and nipples in a male is an aberration”.

However, this thinking is not correct.

The truth is, men have nipples because women have nipples, and biology is very frugal with its templates. We are not two different species after all (even though it often seems so). We are both built from the same genetic DNA. And that DNA creates the same raw material. It is nature’s way of economising. In women, breasts and nipples are developed further because they have to fulfil a purpose. In men, since there is no larger purpose, their growth is stopped after birth.

Whatever may be our gender, everyone starts off as a woman in the mother’s womb. For the first several weeks a developing embryo follows a “female blue print” from the reproductive organs to nipples. Only after about 60 days does the hormone testosterone start acting in the embryos carrying Y chromosome; thereby changing the genetic activity of cells, in the genitals and brain. But by then the rudimentary nipples have already been formed. In the male child, testosterone prevents further growth of breasts and nipples.

Unlike in other male mammals, in humans the nipple formation is stunted by testosterone, they are equipped with nerves and blood vessels. Moreover, since the male nipples are harmless they do not get weeded out by natural selection.

The same is true with our genitals. The clitoris and the penis are one and the same organ, identical in early form, but later enlarged in male foetuses by the action of testosterone. The fact that the clitoris and penis emerge from the same foetal tissue tells you a lot about what a woman really needs to reach orgasm.

Just as she gets turned on when you play with her nipples, you can get high when she reciprocates.

Now you know.

My dear men, go ahead and bare your chest!

This browser settings will not support to add bookmarks programmatically. Please press Ctrl+D or change settings to bookmark this page.
The Week

Topics : #health

Related Reading

    Show more