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    How Kale Went From A Gross Garnish To A Pop Culture Icon, One Salad At A Time

    50 shades of kale.

    Kale, the en vogue, leafy green, nutritious salad base is the hottest new thing around.

    But while everyone is going krazy for kale in 2015, the journey of the nutritious plant is much less glamorous than you might imagine.

    Kale has satiated humans and animals for thousands of years. But, humans have gone rabid for the green across the country and world especially over the past few years.

    Kale is said to have originated in Asia Minor. History says it was brought to Europe around 600 B.C. by "groups of Celtic wanderers."

    This isn't the first time kale has exploded in popularity.

    Kale is a descendant of the wild cabbage family. It's from the same lineage as broccoli, cauliflower, and collards.

    Kale arrived in North America around the 17th century. And you might not believe it, but Americans scoffed at the veggie for some time.

    Despite the green being available for thousands of years, it reached its pop culture apex around late 2013/early 2014 due to a blizzard that caused a drastic shortage in New York City. 😱

    Kale is a very diverse and nutrient-rich vegetable. In fact, there are many different types, and it ranges in color from green to purple with smooth or curly textures.

    According to Authority Nutrition, "The most common type of kale is called curly kale or Scots kale, which has green and curly leaves and a hard, fibrous stem."

    And boy is the nutritional value great! Look at all that Vitamin A you get!

    The reason people love it so much is because it doesn't contain a bunch of fat, and the fat it does have is "the omega-3 fatty acid called alpha linolenic acid." It also has a ton of great antioxidants.

    As a plant, kale is strong! Despite being ridiculously nutritious, farmers and gardeners love it because it's one of the best crops to be grown in the winter.

    Kale began to take pop culture by storm after receiving some heavy celebrity endorsements, particularly this one from kale queen Gwyneth Paltrow, who made kale chips with Ellen back in 2011.

    View this video on YouTube

    NPR says, "People who study kale and such things say it is now on 400 percent more restaurant menus than it was just four years ago." It's so prevalent that "kale aficionados have been known to wear kale T-shirts and sport kale stickers."

    Kale reached a new high when Madonna controversially outed the leafy vegetable as "gay" during an exclusive interview with BuzzFeed that further propelled it into icon status.

    But, not every nation is in a love affair with kale.

    Kale haters aside, today you can find kale everywhere from your local five-star restaurant down to that gross divey place that's trying to stay hip, and of course in every juice bar from California to Japan.

    Kale, the beloved. It's so hot right now, at least until another sexy vegetable swoops in and steals the green-light.