Hate broccoli? Scientists say it could be genetic

You might even be presidential material

Health Minute: Hating Broccoli could be genetic

(CNN) - Do certain vegetables make you want to gag? Does just the thought of broccoli make you want to run for the hills?

Turns out, you could be what scientists refer to as "a super-taster," meaning you’re someone with the genetic predisposition to taste food differently.

Super-tasters tend to be extremely sensitive to bitterness. So when they eat certain vegetables like broccoli, kale, Brussels sprouts, or cabbage, they taste a lot of sulfur.

It all comes down to variants of the taste receptors that control how we experience bitter and sweet foods.

Roughly 25% of the population is extremely sensitive to bitter foods because of the specific inherited taste receptors in their mouths.

The veggies that turn those people off the most also tend to be nutritional powerhouses filled with vitamins and fiber.

Food scientists are working on ways to reduce the level of bitterness in these vegetables, so that “super-tasters” can still get the nutritional benefits they need.

But even if you never come to enjoy broccoli, you’ll be just fine. You might even rise to the highest office in the land.

“I do not like broccoli,” George H. W. Bush playfully stressed during a 1992 news conference. “And I haven’t liked it since I was a little kid. And my mother made me eat it. And I’m President of the United States and I’m not going to eat any more broccoli.”

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