Posts Tagged ‘decimal point boo boo’


1. The Popeye Myth

July 9, 2013

The Popeye Myth is that spinach contains lots of iron.

According to Brainpickings website

pic 1 popeye1

Back in 1870, Erich Von Wolf , a German chemist, examined the amount of iron within spinach, among many other green vegetables. In recording his findings, he accidentally misplaced a decimal point when transcribing data from his notebook, changing the iron content in spinach from 3.5 milligrams of iron in a 100-gram serving of spinach, to 35 milligrams.  It was corrected in 1937, but too late the myth was well established.

popeye 2

This study inspired the Popeye Cartoon character who gets  colossal strength eating cans of spinach.

Unfortunately, it was just a maths blooper. The good news is that:

Popeye Myth Busted.

Girl making face at spinach

Spinach does not have that much more iron than other vegetables.