A Keen Brussels Sprouts Aversion May be Genetic

By Gary Cutlack on at

An advanced chemical analysis of the properties of the Brussels sprout has led one scientist to suggest that a dislike of the divisive festive vegetable could be hereditary, rather than a simple case of being spoilt and fussy.

According to Compound Interest, the supposedly bitter taste that some experience when eating sprouts under threat of not being allowed to watch Doctor Who later comes from a sensitivity to the compounds known as glucosinolates, which are chemically similar in some ways to phenylthiocarbamide -- a synthetic compound known to trigger the unbearably bitter taste response in around 70 per cent of people.

And it's a known genetic trait, so could be passed on from sprout-hating father to sprout-hating son.

So perhaps, in the near future, some sort of Brussels sprouts test could be formulated to see who's genuinely not a fan of the vegetable and who's only pretending so there's more room to cherry-pick the best ones from the chunky biscuit selection. [Compound Chem via Laughing Squid]

Image credit: Brussels sprouts from Shutterstock