Insights and Features of The Best Macro Food Tracker Apps Available
A macro food tracker is essential for anyone who needs to keep their diet in check and calculate their proper macronutrient ratio.
Truth is although there is some legwork involved, tracking macros is not as hard as you may think.
It is certainly possible for you to effectively count all the macros you eat everyday.
The best reason for doing any of this is it helps you hold yourself accountable and is a great way to monitor your progress over time.
So if you are interested in knowing about the best macro food trackers available then please read on because I’ve compiled a list of the top apps for your help.
But before we jump into any of that, let’s a take a step back for a second.
Why would anyone count macros?
Macros (short for macronutrients) are essential nutrients your body needs and they make up a majority composition of all the foods you eat.
The primary reason why your body needs macros is for Energy production.
There are 3 types of macros – Carbohydrates, Fats and Protein.
So when you hear someone talk about counting macros, they simply mean they want to keep track of the amount of carbs, fats and protein in their diet.
Specifically the amount of grams of each macro.
Besides helping increase your amount of energy, counting macros also allows for a combination of food that enables you to get into healthy eating habits.
In the long run, it improves how you feel about yourself and your overall performance.
The goal then for any macro diet is to help with your general health, your weight and your eating habits.
If this concept is new to you, you’re probably wondering “Why not just count calories?”
When it comes to dieting and weight loss, that’s what most people are familiar with but focusing on calories alone doesn’t give you the full picture.
The simple answer is not all calories are the same.
I think we can both agree that 100 calories from a healthy snack are better than 100 calories from a bowl of ice cream.
Obviously you’ll also get better results and outcomes with the healthy snack.
That’s the whole point for counting macros.
It allows you to take a look at the bigger picture and in so doing helps you create a healthy diet regimen for yourself.
If you want to read more about the differences between calories and macros see: Ultimate Macro Diet Guide for Beginners
3 Reasons Why You Need A Macro Food Tracker
1 - Eliminates Guesswork
There are so many old fashioned ways for you to keep track of your macros.
You can use a scale, use a spreadsheet, or rely on memory if you believe you’re just that capable.
But what happens when any one of those things isn’t available?
You certainly don’t want to carry a scale everywhere, a notepad eventually becomes cumbersome and a week from now you won’t remember all those numbers and calculations.
It’s hard enough to commit to any kind of diet so don’t make the rest of the process any harder on yourself.
No need wasting your time and effort when there’s technology readily available.
2 - How Well Are You Really Eating?
You’d be amazed at what your eating habits really look like when you start keeping track of everything.
Ever had that feeling that no matter what you do you can’t seem to achieve your target weight goal?
It could possibly be due to some unhealthy habits you’re unaware of or maybe you’re not even eating the right amount of nutrients.
Tracking what you eat can help eliminate some of those bad habits or help you realize what nutrients you need.
3 - Not All Goals Are The Same
Counting macros isn’t just some fad you need to jump on because everyone is doing it.
You need to know the reason why you chose to do so and what outcomes you expect to have.
There are typically 4 main reasons why anyone would count macros:
- Lose weight
- Gain weight/Add muscle
- Maintain your current weight
- Keto diet
I hope you can see that the dietary requirements for each one of those options will be completely different from each other.
It only makes sense for you to understand that before you begin.
The Simple & Proper Way to Keep Track of Your Macros
Counting macros is meant to be a fun and less restrictive way to make sure you’re eating the right amounts of healthy food.
It’s not as strict as other dieting options and also tends to be a lot easier to commit to.
That said, using a macro food tracker doesn’t mean you plug in a set of random numbers, sit back and hope everything else works out.
As I mentioned in the previous section, everything about a macro diet is goal oriented.
When you have the proper goal in mind, it’s easier for you to analyze your progress and make necessary adjustments along the way.
To make things a little easier for you, here are a few simple steps I suggest you follow:
- Start with a goal in mind – lose weight, keto, etc.
- Estimate your daily calorie requirements FOR your chosen goal – This will depend on a number of factors such as your age, gender, level of activity, and overall health.
- Determine the macro ratio that fits your current situation.
- Plan your meals accordingly and if possible do so ahead of time.
- Record everything!
Click here to get the complete details and the step-by-step process of counting macros.
Best Macro Food Trackers
Now that you’re ready to record and keep track of everything, let’s take a look at the list of the best macro food tracker apps available.
1 - Cronometer
Besides tracking macros, Cronometer tracks minerals and vitamins as well.
It also takes into consideration essential elements such as your sleep, moods, cholesterol, blood pressure, and your general well-being.
However you need to put in some baseline information first to enable those features.
Cronometer as it turns out is an excellent app for anyone on a keto diet.
The app offers the following features:
- A clear overview of your overall health as well as your long-term trends.
- It takes breastfeeding and pregnancy into consideration when tracking macros, among other things.
- The Cronometer database supports a wide range of diets and allows you to search and add your foods and dishes.
- It also allows users to create custom recipes, save them on the app and use them for tracking in the future.
- The macro food tracker has a free version that gives you access to its basic features. You can upgrade to the gold version which goes for less than $3 a month to unlock all the extra features and advanced macro & weight analysis.
- Admittedly for a first time user it can be overwhelming when using Cronometer primarily for tracking macros but it’s easy to get the hang of things and the accuracy and results are impressive.
2 - MyFitnessPal
MyFitnessPal is one of the most popularly used macro apps around the world.
Its extensive database has a list of more than one million foods with their macro counts and other nutrients.
Having such a huge database does make it easier for you to control your macro intake.
Once you sign up, the homepage of the app shows you your macros intake for the day as well as your remaining recommended intake needed.
Here are a few more features of the app:
- The app has a free version for you to analyze your daily intake on all your carbs, fats, and proteins.
- The premium version enables you to set the targets for each of the macros. It gives a precise countdown of what is consumed and if you’re hitting those set targets.
- It has a barcode scanning feature for foods and drinks which allows you to enter your nutrient information instantly and with ease.
- The macro food tracker allows for daily macro consumption and presentations in the form of pie charts.
- Creating custom dishes and foods as well as downloading recipes is easy given the full range of options available and they can be tailored to suit your needs.
- You can decide to stick the free version of the app but I recommend you get the premium version which comes with the target setting feature.
3 - MyMacros+
MyMacros+ is one of the few macro food trackers that focuses primarily on macro counting.
It was built by Jason Loewy, a power lifter and fitness enthusiast, and he created it for people who are sincerely dedicated to the macros lifestyle.
One feature that stands out about this app is that it can still be used even without any internet connection.
Here are a few more of its features:
- It allows you to determine your specific macros based on your set goals.
- It contains an extensive food database which includes all sorts of dishes and recipes to meet your needs.
- You have the ability to set and track macros for days when you’re exercising and when you’re not. That comes in handy when tracking body weight.
- You have the ability to set custom food entries for your homemade recipes. That’s a huge time saver and helps you avoid having to key in single ingredients all the time.
- The app does not have a free version. However the premium version is relatively cheap and costs $1.99 per month or $19.99 annually.
- As expected, you get more functionality with the premium version such as the ability to access your data from anywhere whether it’s a phone, desktop, or laptop.
4 - Carb Manager
Carb Manager is another macro food tracker that works well for anyone on a keto diet.
Besides macros, it also has features that allow you to track your exercises as well.
Like most of the other apps on this list, it also plays a role in setting goals related to your macros and weight targets.
The database contains over a million food items as well as recipes which can be tailored to your specifics.
Carb Manager also has the following features:
- The ability to log your food with the help of pictures thanks to its Snap Food feature.
- Also allows for voice logging by simply dictating your foods.
- Syncs easily with other health apps to allow for macro management without a hassle.
- It works well in identifying and eliminating potential foods that might be dragging you down. (Particularly helpful for your carb counts if you’re on Keto.)
- The app’s free version allows you to monitor your weight, exercise, and body measurements. You can unlock all its extra features with the premium version priced at $39.99 for a whole year.
5 - MyPlate
MyPlate is another ideal app for anyone interested in counting macros and comes backed by Livestrong.com.
The platform is very easy to use and quite newbie friendly.
So if this your first time keeping track of what you eat then this might be a good option for you.
It can also be easily integrated with other health apps for optimal results.
MyPlate has the following features:
- A database with over two million food items and extensive built-in support tools.
- As a new user, you get an introductory walkthrough with a set of questions to evaluate and give you recommendations on how to improve your overall health.
- You can easily scan barcodes when setting meal reminders or adding food items to your database.
- The basic (free) version has enough functionality to allow you to keep track of your essential macros seamlessly.
- Just like all the other apps, you should consider upgrading to the monthly premium subscription for advanced stats, private support groups and priority customer support.
6 - LifeSum
Lifesum works very well in helping you choose a diet plan, finding new recipes, setting weight goals, and tracking calories.
One of the big advantages of this app compared to others is that it also offers hydration management.
This macro food tracker has the following features:
- It has a wide range of recipes in the database that can be tailored to fit your needs.
- The app provides you with unique assessments of your overall health status and recommendations on how to improve it.
- There is some social support within the app so you don’t necessarily feel like you’re working alone.
- The ability to manually log in your foods or scan them if you prefer to do so on packaged items.
- Several diet plans based on what you’re trying to accomplish (strength, keto, clean eating, etc.)
7 - Lose It!
Last but not least is Lose It!
The app has a comprehensive database with a wide range of various foods and recipes which are all very user-friendly.
It has an easy to use interface with daily recommendations based on your own personal information and goals.
Lose It! also has the following features:
- The app has a Snap It feature that allows you to keep track of what you eat by simply taking pictures.
- As you would expect, it has a huge database of food items but the big difference is they have a team of experts to help verify some of the nutritional values of what’s being uploaded.
- You can easily integrate it with other fitness trackers as you see fit.
- You’ll also find a lot of (community & personal) challenges within the app which helps prevent monotony and possibly meet different goals.
- It is free to download but you can always upgrade to the premium version for $39.99 a year.
To Sum It All Up
Using a macro food tracker is necessary because it simplifies the way you monitor your food and eliminates a lot of the stress and headache involved with having to remember everything.
All the apps mentioned above have their own unique features that will definitely work appropriately for any macro diet and help you reach your health goals.
As you’ve seen, most of them offer free downloads to get you started but it’s better to invest in the premium versions so you can take full advantage of whichever app you use.
The most important thing you need to remember is that the apps alone are not the solution.
They’re there to assist you on your health journey so you can get the results you desire.
Always begin with a goal in mind and work hard to get there.
Wishing you a good health!