In July 2019, Macro Snacks of Charlotte, North Carolina, introduced the company’s first product: Snack crisps formulated to match the macronutrient suggestions of the 2015–2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Macronutrients—proteins, carbohydrates, and fats—are the building blocks of the human body.
The guidelines suggest daily diets for adults include 10 percent to 30 percent protein, 45 percent to 65 percent carbohydrates, and 20 percent to 35 percent fat. To follow these guidelines, each 1.2oz serving of Macro Snacks contains 45 percent carbs, 30 percent protein, and 25 percent fat. The nutritional information looks like this:
Protein – 11g
Carbs – 16g
Fat – 3.5g
Calories – 140
“We are making it much easier for consumers by offering great-tasting snacks that are readily balanced with the right number of macros,” said Justin Wiesehan, founder and CEO of Macro Snacks, in a press release. “With each bag of Macro Snacks, consumers are getting everything they need from a macronutrient perspective in one shot, and nothing they don’t.”
That fits into the top trend of Snacking: The Definitive Occasion.
The company website About page explains that Wiesehan loved chips but felt they sabotaged his diet goals. After not finding a product that satisfied his taste buds, he set out to create high-protein chips balanced with the other macronutrients. “I knew that the balance of these three macronutrients could make up for what the other products lacked in flavor AND provide more functionality for me, and you, the consumer,” says Wiesehan on the About page.
The Macro Diet
The concept of eating by counting macronutrients—grams of proteins, carbs and fats—is not new, according to a December 2018 Today article. The first to embrace the macro diet were bodybuilders who chose protein, fat, and carbohydrate counts to match specific regimens and goals. Then the diet started to become popular among people wanting to lose weight.
“The benefit of counting macros over dieting is rather obvious: It allows for flexibility and discourages the elimination of entire food groups,” states the Today article. “It also may be a more sustainable approach since it provides options that most traditional diets leave out.”
The article also notes the macro diet can be difficult and confusing. “Counting macros takes not only calculations in grams or ratios specific to your weight, height and activity level, but you also need to know how to maximize each food group,” according to the article. “For example, even though carbohydrates are included in the macro diet, not all carbs fit the same. There is also no ‘one-plan-fits-all’ guide on how your ratios of fat, protein and carbohydrate should be divided.”
The vegan, non-GMO, and gluten free Macro Snack crisps come in three varieties: cheddar cheese, BBQ sauce, and sour cream and onion. They are currently available only on the company website and Amazon. The company website shows a suggested retail price for a pack of six 1.2oz bags as US$18.99, though the website is currently selling them for $16.99.
I purchased a variety six-pack on Amazon for $12.99. The BBQ sauce flavor is crispy with a moderate amount of seasoning I found tasty.
BBQ Sauce Ingredients: Pea Crisp (Pea Protein Isolate, Chickpea Flour, Rice Flour, Soy Protein Isolate, Corn Starch, Monocalcium Phosphate, Baking Soda), Seasoning (Organic Brown Cane Sugar, Organic Cane Sugar, Salt, Tomato Powder, Spices, Onion Powder, Molasses, Maltodextrin, Garlic Powder, Vinegar, Citric Acid, Natural Flavor, Paprika Extract [For Color]), High Oleic Sunflower Oil.
Consumers are demanding healthy snacks and are showing interest in increasingly specific personalization of their nutrition. Macro Snacks are at the center of several top trends related to healthy snacking: “Eating for Me” and “Snacking: The Definitive Occasion.” More brands are likely to develop claims focused on the intricate details of their product’s nutritional offerings, down to the “macro” level.