This cultural phenomenon is common in (but not specific to) Japan, the polar opposite being SweetTooth.

From the very first time we partake in our mother's milk as infants, its soothing and sweet taste subconsciously indoctrinates us to associate sweetness with comfort, gentleness and the pleasant things in life. That's why sweetness is the favorite taste of children in general when they first graduate from infancy, before life experience allows them to gradually acquire new food preferences.

It is for the very same reasons above that sugar and sweetness are culturally coded as childish and feminine, as opposed to the "mature and masculine" flavors of saltiness, spiciness, bitterness and even sourness. Many a teenage boy (but not all of them) who wishes to be [[RatedMForManly a man amongst men]] are expected to indoctrinate himself to hate sweets, ''especially'' openly scorning it in front of his macho friends, as a means to accentuate and emphasize his masculinity. Complementing this is the stereotype that women do like sweets in general and chocolate in particular, and the trope in which a heartbroken young woman [[DrowningMySorrows drowns her sorrows]] in [[HeartbreakAndIceCream ice cream]] is well-known.

Woe betide the teenage boy who is caught liking sugar or (shock horror) caught having a banana ice cream sundae topped with a cherry; from that point onward, he is a socially dead pariah, no better than "those wretched {{Otaku}} losers who hang out at {{Cosplay Cafe}}s".
Eventually, this self-brainwashing becomes ingrained into the subconscious, and many adult men (or the [[RealWomenNeverWearDresses particularly macho]] StrawFeminist) grow up to be physically repulsed by the very taste of sugar, syrup and honey.

Even in Japan, this is only partially TruthInTelevision; many men openly like sweet foods and will happily eat them in public. It is, however, generally assumed that women like their sweet stuff sweeter and more elaborate.

In Western contexts, anyone possessing this trope is probably considered odd by society at large, because sugar ''does'' taste pleasant. The obvious attempt to force an image of toughness and masculinity will be plain as day for everyone to see if the trope applies to a man, and insecurities and potential anorexia or bulimia if to a woman. The main exception in the West is in regard to alcoholic beverages: "real men" drink cordials and sweet liqueurs only occasionally if at all, avoid fruit mixes (except perhaps fresh lemon or lime, or "classic" mixes involving fresh fruit juice); no, a real man relishes in the harshness of his whisk(e)y/brandy/rum/vodka, the pininess of his gin, the nausea of his tequila, and the bitterness of his beer, and avoids sweet wine if he can help it. Less often, coffee and tea are seen as more masculine if unsweetened (or if too hot to taste). It may still be played straight for other foods in cases of TestosteronePoisoning, however. (There is also an association of Testosterone Poisoning with [[BlazingInfernoHellfireSauce food containing unnecessary or enhanced (i.e. the vinegar content of vindaloo) amounts of chilli pepper]], however, for reasons that should be obvious.)

Compare with SweetTooth and RealWomenDontWearDresses.

Contrast with RealMenWearPink.

See also RealMenEatMeat.

Has nothing to do with HitlerAteSugar.

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!!Examples:

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[[folder:Advertising]]
* The whole [[http://www.thefword.org.uk/reviews/2002/05/not_for_girls_the_yorkie_and_echo_adverts "It's not for girls" advertising campaign]] for Yorkie Bars seems to based on an assumption that chocolate was in danger of becoming too feminine.
* A Miller Lite commercial had a bunch of men, after some debate, decide that putting fruit in beer is completely unacceptable for a man.
* A GreatDepression era ad for [[http://www.flickr.com/photos/jon_williamson/8462715133/ Knox's Unsweetened Gelatin]] [[ValuesDissonance uses this gimmick]].
-->“Oh lady - what a salad! Not like the sissy concoctions some girls serve. They’re enough to keep a man a bachelor forever.”
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[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* The Capturing God Keima Katsuragi in ''Manga/TheWorldGodOnlyKnows'' hates sweets in any form, though he tried to overcome it when eating Elsie's cake (for her own sake).
* This is not only used in ''Anime/{{FLCL}}'' but is in fact a major plot point to show Naota's immaturity, by the fact that he hates spicy and sour food. The series starts and ends with Naota saying "I don't like sour stuff." This also extends to Amarao who also loves all things sweet and hates spicy and sour foods, show casing to the audience his immaturity as well.
** At one point Amarao makes some kind of speech about how sugar gives you energy and it's natural to like sweet things. He's trying to sound deep, like his supposed immaturity is really some big conspiratorial secret, but...well, it's Amarao.
* Hardcore martial artist Saotome Ranma of ''Manga/RanmaOneHalf'' is a subversion of this trope: He personally ''loves'' ice cream, but would not be caught ''dead'' saying he does, much less going to restaurants and ordering it. Fortunately, [[GenderBender he is able to turn into a cute girl when he comes in contact with cold water]]. This "[[CursedWithAwesome curse]]" allows him to openly and gleefully order chocolate sundaes with a cherry on top in public; heck, he even uses his cuteness to scam ''free'' ice cream off the young and impressionable clerks!!
-->'''Akane''': If you like ice-cream so much, why don't you go get it as a guy?
-->'''Ranma''': Us guy don't do that! Those are girls's desserts!
* The main character in the ''{{moe}}'' GenderBender {{manga}} ''MoonlightFromage'' is turned from an {{Eroge}}-loving 15-year-old boy into an adorable 15-year-old girl and transported from modern Japan to an alternate Elizabethan Europe. His caretaker is an absolutely ''moe'' teenage {{Tsundere}} who tends to cook with a ''lot'' of sugar. He initially ''pretends'' to like her sweet-tasting creamy spaghetti, but after spending a month or so as a girl, eventually grows to ''actually'' like it.
* OuranHighSchoolHostClub: Hunny tries to stop liking sweets in order to seem more manly, but it doesn't work. In contrast, his brother Yasuchika despises sweets.
* Intentionally invoked in ''{{Otomen}}'' - Asuka tries to order bitter, salty, and/or sour foods (for example, having his coffee black) in order to appear more manly. He actually does prefer sweets, though, and loves to bake cookies and pastries (although he tries to hide that too). His {{Masquerade}} is so strong that girls in his class naturally assume he wouldn't want to try their cookies. His tomboyish girlfriend Ryo on the other hand likes hot and spicy foods and will gleefully order them though she doesn't hate sweets either.
* Manga/{{Naruto}}'s Sasuke [[AllThereInTheManual hates sweets]], which may be a result of growing up too fast (or trying too hard) after seeing his family murdered before his eyes. This didn't seem to be the case before the massacre.
** His AloofBigBrother Itachi's hobby is listed in the data books as visiting sweet shops. Make of that what you will.
* Gen from ''{{Kekkaishi}}'' can't stand anything sweet. This makes him a foil to Yoshimori, who aspires to be a prodigious baker and bake a cake castle for Tokine.
* In ''FruitsBasket'', when Kagura tries to present Kyo with chocolate for Valentine's Day, he makes a big deal of how he's too manly to like sugary food. Shigure then rags on him by saying that the truly manly thing to do would be to suck it up and eat the chocolate rather than break a girl's heart by rejecting her gift.
* ''Very'' averted by [[Manga/AxisPowersHetalia Hetalia's]] Turkey, a very manly-looking BoisterousBruiser who ''adores'' sweets. Considering how Turkish cuisine gives a lot of importance to desserts and all kinds of pastries, it's a JustifiedTrope.
* Subverted in ''Manga/TheSecretAgreement'', where it seems like Kyuusei rejects all sweets because of this and is subtly teasing Yuuichi for being unmanly. It turns out he was being literal about not being able to eat sugar as it actually kills people from their clan, and Yuuichi is only abnormal because he doesn't react to it until later in life.
* Shou of ''Manga/SkipBeat'' dislikes anything that's too sweet, but claims to the public that he'll eat anything. This causes trouble when Mimori makes lunch and includes an eggroll that's too sweet. He tries to discreetly throw away the sweet parts, but his childhood friend Kyouko (who knows he doesn't like sweets but is holding a grudge against him) silently pressures him to eat the whole thing since Mimori worked hard to make it. Unfortunately for Kyouko, this helps Shou figure out who she is.
* Invoked and subverted in ''Manga/{{Bleach}}'': Ichigo Kurosaki, a tough AntiHero... actually [[TrademarkFavoriteFood adores chocolate.]]
* ''DGrayMan'': Completely averted with Skinn Bolic, TheBrute and "Wrath" of the villainous Noah family led by the [[BigBad the Millennium Earl]], and the one with the HairTriggerTemper. He is utterly obsessed with sweets, earning the nickname "Sweet Tooth" by one of his family members. When he is was served a boiled egg during a family meeting with the Earl for dinner, he went into an UnstoppableRage and proceeded to ruthlessly beat and tear apart one of the Akuma (who are unwilling SlaveMooks) who served him for not following his orders to make it sweet.
* In ''SatisfactionGuaranteed'', one of Anything, Inc.'s clients is a baker, and Shima complains about having to meet him at his pastry shop, which is frequented by teenage girls. [[TheRival APP]] tells him to quit whining and deal with it. [[spoiler: Interestingly, it's the baker's female love interest who really dislikes sweets. She didn't want to hurt his feelings by telling him, but fortunately, he had already figured it out by the time she came in to confess and had gotten around that obstacle by making her a chicken pot pie.]]
* ''Manga/BlackBird'': Kyo hates sweets to the point that he almost becomes nauseous from a taste of ice cream, but he still forces himself to eat the cake that his girlfriend Misao made.
* ''Fatally'' invoked in a {{filler}} episode of Manga/DetectiveConan, where the local male sweet-hater who doubles as a JerkAss is killed when his ''coffee'' is laced with poison, with the only avaliable antidote being placed in a cake's icing (which he wouldn't eat for obvious reasons). The killer also poisoned a half-eaten bar of chocolate and switched it with one that was given to the victim as Valentines gift by his would-be girlfriend, in an attempt to frame said girl since the murderer knew the victim would take a bite of his chocolatey "enemy" to please her.
* In DragonBallZ, while Goku and Vegeta are [[FantasticVoyagePlot exploring the insides of]] [[SweetTooth Buu]], Vegeta expresses disgust at the abundance of sweets and total absence of [[RealMenEatMeat meat]] in Buu's stomach.
** We once see the Crane Hermit/Tsuru-sennin getting upset when his student interrupts him in the middle of eating an ice cream parfait. Although Tsuru is quite strong, the trope is likely being invoked to demonstrated how [[EvilIsPetty immature]] he is.
* From ''{{Franchise/Anpanman}}'', Currypanman, the toughest of the superhero characters, hates sweet foods. This becomes a bit awkward for him when he saves the day during Valentine's Day, leading the girls he saved to give him tons of chocolates he has no intent on eating.
* Subverted spectacularly in {{Toriko}} where the titular character who lives in a house made of sweets, him eating it [[BigEater is a recurring problem]]. Also, more than one of the dishes he prepares in the series are desserts and he treats them with the same respect as the savory ones.
* Subverted by [[Anime/SpaceDandy Dandy]], who despite being a ladies man has no problem ordering large parfaits or giant stacks of pancakes.
* ''TsubasaReservoirChronicle'': In Outo, Kurogane complains about Fay "forcing me to eat that awful, sweet junk! In the morning!!"
** Syaoran, on the other hand, thought the food was delicious. And it should come as no surprise that [[InTouchWithHisFeminineSide Fay]] himself cheerfully averts this trope.
* The corollary was used in ''LightNovel/GJBu''. Kyoro, who is hardly a "real man" but a defeatist NiceGuy that the girls found harmless, once stated he didn't care for "real coffee" because it was too bitter, and prefers the over-sweetened canned coffee instead. He was immediately called "little kid" by Mao.
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[[folder:Manhwa]]
* Junghyun from ''Webcomic/WelcomeToRoom305'' hates sweets. His roommate on the other hand loves them and puts honey even in rice.
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[[folder:Film]]
* In the finale of ''Film/KindergartenCop'', John Kimble is visibly gargling at the taste of the sweet fruit jelly that the orderlies fed him as he lies bedridden in hospital. His visiting partner [[LampshadeHanging points this out]] to the nurse.
-->"What are you doing, feeding him Jell-O? Tough guys hate Jell-O!!
* In the beginning of ''Film/SuddenImpact'', Dirty Harry is alerted to a robbery by the waitress dumping spoonfuls of sugar in his tea, causing a SpitTake. He later confirms that he hates sugar in his tea, and the waitress knew it.
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[[folder:Literature]]
* According to Bruce Fernstein's book ''Real Men Don't Eat Quiche'', not only do Real Men stay away from quiche, they never eat desserts of any kind, if it can be avoided.
* In one of the books in ''Literature/TheBabySittersClub'' series when Nicky Pike and Buddy Barrett refuse to eat cookies after having been teased for attending a "girly" sewing class.
* {{Averted}} in True Grit by Rooster Cogburn. Trigger-happy as can be, he still loves his honey-cakes.
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[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* In ''Series/HowIMetYourMother'' this is commented on in several episodes, with the cuddly (but archetypal good boyfriend) Marshall upset that he can't have pink drinks with fruit in them or go to brunch by himself, because they're considered 'girly'.
* Gunpei in ''Series/EngineSentaiGoOnger'', though he will try to eat Saki's cake.
* Matt Kennedy Gould from ''Series/TheJoeSchmoShow'' is disgusted by the taste of chocolate. One challenge forced him to lick chocolate off of a woman's body. He spent half of the challenge choking and gagging at the taste.
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[[folder:Video Games]]
* In one scene in ''VideoGame/ProfessorLaytonAndTheCuriousVillage'', Inspector Chelmey professes to hate sweets with such fervor that even the sight of them makes him nauseous, demanding that the serving boy get rid of the tea-cakes he's brought out. [[spoiler:This turns out to be a key hint in exposing him as Don Paolo in disguise, when Layton and Luke find a newspaper article which casually mentions that it's a widely-known fact that the famous Inspector Chelmey loves his wife's sweet potato fritters]].
* Raven in ''VideoGame/TalesOfVesperia''. Ironically, he admits in a skit he knows how to bake sweets and did so to impress girls.
** Subverted by Yuri from the same game, who has an immense sweet tooth (as evidenced by the fact that his favorite recipes are desserts) in addition to being an immense badass.
** Leon in ''VideoGame/TalesOfDestiny'' asserts this mindset whenever around the immature Stahn. Leon's favorite food? [[HypocriticalHumor Flan served to him by his maid]].
* A lot of characters in ''VideoGame/BlazeUnion'' have trouble eating candy and even some kinds of fruit because of how sweet they are, but this isn't limited to just the men--Medoute, Sleip, Eudy, Emilia, and Baretreenu hate sweets too. Comically, the loud and proud manliest man of the party is a SweetTooth.
* Completely averted by the ''very'' manly [[TheKingOfFighters Maxima]], who openly mentions his love of sweets and ice-cream. Not to mention, he ''needs'' these sweets to funcion since he triples as a {{Cyborg}}, a {{Technopath}} ''and'' a GeniusSweetTooth -- he must [[GeniusBruiser use his brains]] in a regular basis, and since glucose is the "fuel" for the brains...
* Gaius in ''VideoGame/FireEmblemAwakening'' is basically [[DefiedTrope a big "screw you"]] to this trope. He loves sweets, [[SupremeChef he makes his own sweets]], many of his dialogue pieces mention sweets (even his love confession, in the English version of the game), and not only he's unashamed of it, but he's never seen as unmanly due to this trope. (At most, people are concerned about his health.)
** The crowning example of Gaius' sweet tooth: Chrom manages to get him to join your team... [[CrowningMomentOfFunny by letting him keep a bag of sweets he was carrying]]!
* In TheWorldEndsWithYou, how much a character likes a food affects how well its [[PowerUpFood status effect]] works, with the characters helpfully reacting with a soundbite of their reaction. Beat, TheBigGuy, resident DumbMuscle, and easily the manliest of the playable characters, reacts with outright disgust when the player tries to give him things like crepes and ice cream, while the other boys tend to be fairly ambivalent on them.
* {{VideoGame/Borderlands 2}}: Subverted by [[LargeHam Mr. Torgue]], who at first glance looks like the sort of BoisterousBruiser TestosteronePoisoning victim who would be all about grilling nearly-rare steaks and little else. While he does [[BaconAddiction have machines that dispense bacon]], Mister Torgue himself appears to live on chocolate chip cookies.
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[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* Tomoya of ''VisualNovel/{{CLANNAD}}'' admits that he doesn't really like sweets at all, in contrast to most of the girls, and especially [[SweetTooth Mei]]. This suits his more manly, but also more pessimistic and depressed outlook compared to the brighter, happier views of his love interests and friends.
* Yuichi of ''VisualNovel/{{Kanon}}'' openly expresses that he hates sweets, and is delighted to hear Akiko's "special jam" doesn't taste sweet... until [[GargleBlaster he tastes the jam in question]].
* Parodied in ''VisualNovel/HigurashiWhenTheyCry'', where Keiichi is able to blackmail a star pitcher into throwing the game to the Hinamizawa home team by threatening to out him as a closet SweetTooth.
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[[folder:Web Comics]]
* Implied in ''WebComic/{{Hiimdaisy}}'''s ''Big Long VideoGame/{{Persona 4}}'' comic, where when the protagonist asks for cream as the coffee addition, [[AbusiveParents Dojima]] [[CommanderContrarian replies with]]: "Oh, coming right up, ''madam!''". When asked for cream ''and sugar'', Dojima replies with, "What are you, ''[[CheerfulChild Nanako?]]''"
--->'''Nanako:''' [[FunnyBackgroundEvent daddy i want it black]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Real Life]]
* "Men's Pocky," which is coated in substantially less sweet dark chocolate, the stick itself being made slightly bitter with unsweetened cocoa powder.
* In the 1990s Coors Brewing Company released a clear alcopop beverage called Zima. It was marketed as a masculine alcoholic beverage for men who didn't like beer. The marketing did not work: most of the people who drank Zima were women in their 20s, and among men it became the butt of jokes as guys who drank it were portrayed as being girly men.
** The same song and dance is still being done with Zima's dozens of successors like Mike's Hard Lemonade and Smirnoff Ice, except that despite the aggressive marketing to men (''[[TestosteronePoisoning especially]]'' [[TestosteronePoisoning for Mike's]]) and consumption mostly by women, these have been more successful overall.
* The Roman army listed "confectioners" among the professions it disapproved of for prospective recruits.
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