Are you bored with eating right, since each meal mostly consists of produce, fish, and chicken? No worries! Try out some “superfoods” for variety.

Wikipedia assures us that “superfood” is “a marketing term,” and it has no specific definition. However, we generally understand it to mean a nutrient dense food. naturally, that includes things like salmon and spinach, almonds and kale, but the term is actually used more often for highly specialized products that need more marketing than meat and vegetables, because they’re not part of the daily American diet.

I was sent a big box of this kind of superfood: goji berries, quinoa, cacao nibs, chia seeds, and some supplements as well, and I’m giving them a try. After all, if adding a few exotic ingredients to my meals will improve my health, I’m for it.

One of the issues with superfoods is that the hefty nutritional numbers go with large servings and the foods themselves often make sense in small servings. Chia seeds, for example, have more omega-3 fatty acids than salmon, gram for gram, but a bite of salmon is a normal part of a meal. An equivalent quantity of chia seeds will normally be spread throughout a recipe, not eaten in one bite.

And they taste odd, frankly. Cacao nibs are often described with terms like “crunchy, chocolatey goodness,” but the truth is that eating a cacao nib is a lot like eating tree bark. Nori’s flavor reminds me of lettuce that has gone bad. Chia seeds taste like nothing at all, and that seems like an advantage.

What’s more, it’s hard to see any benefits. I guess that’s true of the things I believe in as well: eating broccoli for a couple of weeks wouldn’t make a striking difference in one’s sense of well-being, even though eating plenty of veggies is known to stave off most of the horrible diseases in the world.

It seems to me that using superfoods as substitutes for less nutrient-dense foods makes sense: goji berries in salad instead of croutons, chia seeds to thicken a sauce instead of flour.