Why is my male betta fish fat?

In this blog, we will discuss the reasons behind fat male betta fish and how to deal with their obesity problem.This blog is for all male betta owners who are unhappy or worried with the weight of their male bettas.


In this blog

  • Why is my male betta fish fat?
  • What could be the possible reasons for male bettas to get fat?
  • How to know if your male betta is too fat?
  • How to deal with a fat male betta fish?
  • How much protein and fat do bettas need on a daily basis?
  • How much to feed a male betta fish per day?
  • What are the side effects of fat or overweight male betta fish?
  • Summary 
  • Frequently asked questions
  • Reference 

Why is my male betta fish fat?

Betta fish gaining weight is one of the common problems that most betta keepers face. Male bettas gain weight or get fat when they eat too many calories and don’t burn enough while swimming.

Captive-bred male betta fish are less active than wild betta fish due to the convenience provided by the aquarium owners.Sedentary lifestyle in captivity can also be detrimental to health, as weight gain can occur due to decreased metabolic rate.

They can also get fat by consuming the right amount of calories, but there are too many calories from fat and not enough calories from protein.

Protein is the most important ingredient in a betta fish diet, and ensuring that your fish get all the essential amino acids from protein is important to their health.

How to know if your male betta is too fat?

The general physical condition of a fish should be judged from the dorsoventral side or the upper part of the fish. 

Betta’s shoulders are located directly behind the gill covers or flaps and should be the same width as the middle one-third portion of their body.

A well-built male betta fish should be torpedo shaped, tapering gradually from head to tail. If the sides of your male betta fish bulge out from the shoulders, then your fish is too fat.

What could be the possible reasons for male bettas to get fat?

Continuous overdose of nutritious foods such as pellets can lead to constipation, bloating, and obesity due to the fat surrounding bettas’ gut.

Feeding a lot of foods or foods rich in protein or fats that are not rich in balanced nutrients can contribute to obesity in male betta fish.

Overeating or feeding the wrong type of food can cause constipation and other digestive problems in male betta fish.

If the metabolism of male betta fish is too slow due to cold water, they will gain weight and look fat. Male betta is a tropical fish and requires a water temperature in the range between 75-80F.

If the aquarium water is too cold, the male betta fish will not be able to properly digest its food.This can also lead to lethargy because your male betta doesn’t have enough energy to swim around.

Temperature plays a key role in male betta fish metabolism.It is very important to maintain their aquarium water temperature with a heater and thermometer.

How to deal with a fat male betta fish?

Obesity in male betta fish can be a serious problem and internal fats that clog various organs can be a serious health concern.

If protein and fat are within the acceptable range, you will need to reduce the amount of pellets per feeding.

Better start by reducing the time of each feeding by one pellet, continue for 2 weeks and see if the body condition of your fighting fish improves.

Foods rich in protein, such as bloodworms or brine shrimp, should be fed once or twice a week.

The temperature of the male betta aquarium should be kept at 75-80F. The temperature should be maintained with an efficient heater and thermometer.

Be sure to monitor the water temperature of your betta fish tank regularly to keep your betta fish in optimal conditions.

The best way to deal with this is to educate yourself about proper betta keeping and diet before you buy.

Instead of shopping for the cheapest items on the pet shop shelves, take the time to review the nutrition facts on fish food packaging to make the best decision for your betta fish.

Change fish food every 6 months for optimal health, as after 6 months, fish food has lost most of its water-soluble vitamin content, including vitamin C.

Twice a day monitor how much food your male betta can eat in 3-5 minutes and only feed him that much food as overweight male bettas have a shorter lifespan.

How much protein and fat do bettas need on a daily basis?

Since betta is a carnivore, protein is one of their most important vitamins. Betta fish have to drag their huge tail, which requires more calories.

Research has proven that the level of dietary protein in betta fish should be around 30- 35%, and it can be a mixture of plant and animal proteins.

The fat level has yet to be determined, but like many other fish, try to keep them around 5%, and anything beyond that is bad for male betta fish.The type of fat is also important, as betta fish have a hard time digesting solid or saturated fats.These saturated fats are especially harmful and should be avoided at all cost.

How much to feed a male betta fish per day?

Any amount of 4 to 6 pellets once or twice per day is considered a good amount to feed a betta fish.The pellets expand when they hit the water and are very satisfying for a male betta fish.

This measurement can vary as manufacturers produce pellets of different sizes, so take this measurement as a general rule.

Instead of pellet feeding 1-2 days a week, freeze-dried or fresh food can be used.

What are the side effects of fat or overweight male betta fish?

Bettas may be susceptible to overfeeding and/or rearing in an inappropriate environment. This is a very serious health problem with limited treatment options.

Contact your aquatic veterinarian as soon as possible if a male betta fish has not passed the feces or has begun to develop dropsy, also known as kidney disease.

A fat male betta might find it difficult to swim normally.They become lethargic and mostly spend their time at one spot.This behavior will make them unhealthy.


If you keep feeding your male bettas and they eat everything, they are at high risk of obesity.Overweight can lead to serious health problems, so it is important to take action on this problem.

Low calorie fish food is a great way to reduce your male betta’s feed intake without sacrificing key nutrients.

It is necessary to take regular temperature measurements in a male betta fish aquarium. This should become part of the daily routine.

To ensure that a male betta fish is happy and healthy with the right amount of nutrients, check the amount of food you feed them regularly with each meal. 

Be careful not to overfeed your male bettas, as overeating can make them fat. Always check your male bettas food requirements with a veterinarian or trusted handler and feed them accordingly.

There are many reasons why a male betta fish might be overweight. These problems can be avoided if the owner gives proper care and attention.

It is very important to monitor the weight of male betta fish. Overeating and not exercising enough can cause many health problems.

Frequently asked questions

Does water temperature affect the metabolism of male betta fish?

Yes, water temperature does affect male betta fish metabolism.If the water in the aquarium is too cold, male betta fish will not be able to digest their food properly. Also, male bettas will not have enough energy to swim, which can lead to lethargy.

Do male bettas gain weight due to overeating or overfeeding?

It is very important not to overfeed male bettas, as overeating can make them fat. Overeating and not getting enough exercise can lead to many health problems.

How much protein and fat should be fed to a male betta fish?

Studies show that male betta fish should have a dietary protein level of about 30-35% and a fat level of 5%.

Can you feed bloodworms, brine shrimps and other protein packed food to male bettas daily?

Protein-rich foods such as bloodworms or artemia aka brine shrimps should be fed once or twice a week.

Can you feed betta pellets to male bettas thrice per day?

Continued overdose of betta pellets can make male bettas fat. The amount of 4-6 pellets once or twice daily is considered a suitable amount to feed male betta fish. 

Can a fat male betta fish swim properly?

Yes, a fat male betta fish will face difficulties in swimming due to low metabolism and lethargy.