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Not Liking Vegetables Is Actually Genetic, So Take That

Not Liking Vegetables Is Actually Genetic, So Take That

Have you been going through life wondering why you have such disdain for the humble sprout? Perhaps even the sight of a cabbage turns your stomach? If so, it's not your fault, it's your genes, according to a new study.

Research carried out by the University of Kentucky revealed that people who inherited two copies of a certain gene variant found vegetables like broccoli and sprouts to have a bitter taste.

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Theres a scientific reason you don't like veg (Credit: Pexels)
Theres a scientific reason you don't like veg (Credit: Pexels)

Humans inherit two copies of a taste gene called TA2R38, one from your mother and the other from your father - yet, there are several variants of the gene that can affect your sensitivity to bitter flavours.

So those who inherit two copies of a variant called AVI aren't sensitive to bitter flavours, while those with one AVI variant and one PAV variant can experience bitter tastes.

And if you fall into the category, where you have two copies of the PAV variant, then foods including dark chocolate, coffee and even beer can taste extremely bitter.

Dr Jennifer Smith explained: "We're talking a ruin-your-day level of bitter when they tasted the test compound. These people are likely to find broccoli, brussels sprouts and cabbage unpleasantly bitter."

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People with the gene are likely to find broccoli, brussels sprouts and cabbage unpleasantly bitter. (Credit: Pexels)
People with the gene are likely to find broccoli, brussels sprouts and cabbage unpleasantly bitter. (Credit: Pexels)

The American study, which surveyed 175 members of the public about their food preferences, revealed that people with two copies of the PAV variant were two and a half times more likely to eat minimal vegetables, than those with the AVI variant.

The leader of the study added: "We thought they might take in more sugar and salt as flavour enhancers to offset the bitter taste of other foods, but that wasn't the case.

"Down the road we hope we can use genetic information to figure out which vegetables people may be better able to accept and to find out which spices appeal to super-tasters so we can make it easier for them to eat more vegetables."

So there you have it, it really isn't your fault... blame it on the 'rents.

Featured Image Credit: Aldi

Topics: Life News, Food And Drink, Health

Lisa McLoughlin

Lisa is a freelance journalist working for Tyla and the team's token Dubliner. After graduating with a MA in PR and Digital Marketing from D.I.T., she worked for MailOnline, Sun Online, Irish Independent and broadcaster RTÉ. Got a story of interest or want advice on how to pour the perfect pint of Guinness? Then email her at [email protected]

 

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