High-Performance Eating vs. Low-Performance Eating

Make your calories count. Eating for health, performance, and readiness isn’t just about getting the right amount of calories. It’s about choosing the best quality calories to fuel your body and mind. Check out the example of a day of high-performance foods vs low-performance food choices.

Learn more about building a power plate to fuel your performance.

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Published on: April 10, 2019

High-Performance Eating vs. Low-Performance Eating

Choosing the right fuel can make the difference between mission success and failure. One of the two approaches below is a much better way to fuel your tank. Focus on eating for performance to achieve optimal mission readiness.

MAKE YOUR CALORIES COUNT. For the same number, the calories in a High-Performance diet meet your daily nutritional needs. The “empty” calories in a Low-Performance diet don’t.

On Low-Performance end of graphic, nearly empty battery image labelled as 2800 CALORIES

Low-Performance Breakfast:

  • Energy drink, 8.3 ounces

Low-Performance Snack:

  • Glazed doughnut

Low-Performance Lunch:

  • Hamburger, ¼ pound Meat, with Bun
  • Fries
  • Medium Chocolate-chip cookie
  • 1 Medium Soda, 16 ounces

Low-Performance Snack:

  • Chocolate wafer candy bar
  • Energy drink, 8.3 ounces

Low-Performance hydration during/post-exercise:

  • Diet soda

Low-Performance Dinner:

  • Spaghetti with Meat Sauce, 1½ cups
  • Broccoli with Cheese, 1 cup
  • Vanilla ice cream, Regular, 1 cup
  • Iced tea, unsweetened, 16 ounces


On High-Performance end of graphic, nearly full battery image labelled as 2800 CALORIES

High-Performance Breakfast:

  • Eggs, 2 large, scrambled
  • Whole wheat toast, 2 slices
  • Butter, 1 tablespoon
  • Milk, low-fat, 8 ounces
  • Banana, 1 medium
  • Coffee
  • Water, 12 ounces


High-Performance Snack:

  • Vanilla yogurt, low-fat, 8 ounces
  • Granola, ½ cup
  • Water, 20 ounces


High-Performance Lunch:

  • Tuna, in water, 6 ounce can, drained
  • Mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon
  • Whole-grain bread, 2 slices
  • Apple, 1 medium
  • Iced tea, unsweetened, 16 ounces


High-Performance Snack:

  • Peanut butter, 2 tablespoons
  • Bagel, whole wheat, one 4”


High-Performance hydration during/post-exercise:

  • Water, 20 ounces
  • Chocolate milk, 8 ounces


High-Performance Dinner:

  • Grilled chicken breast, 4 ounces
  • Broccoli, 1 cup
  • Brown rice, 1½ cups
  • Vanilla ice cream, Regular, 1 cup
  • Flavored seltzer, Unsweetened, 12 ounces

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