Cartoon favourite, Popeye, always cracked open a can of spinach when he needed an energy boost to fight off his enemies and save Olive.
But research has suggested it would have been better if he had opted for beetroot!
Boffins have discovered that beetroot's high levels of nitrates improve muscle efficiency and stamina.
Research results, published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, show that subjects' average running speed increased after eating the vegetable.
"That Popeye should've taken the beetroot, not spinach," said a spokesman for the St Louis University eggheads.
A spokesman for Popeye Inc said: "Of course we thought of that - everyone in Popeye-land knows about beetroot.
"But think about it... Popeye eats beetroot? It's red... everyone thinks he's a commie bastard - or a damned pinko at least! How's that gonna look?
"We plumped for spinach - good capitalist veg!"