Eating for Success


To identify foods that promote good health and give the edge to a baseball player.



The Story

Javy Lopez is hot. In his last 22 games, he had 15 homers, 28 RBIs, and a batting average of .403. Things were very different for Lopez last season. The Atlanta Braves catcher was in a slump that was already two years old.

But during the off season, something happened.

It began with changes in his life style. Javy Lopez put himself on a Subway diet, he began running, and he started lifting weights. By training camp, Lopez had lost 38 pounds and he was leaner and quicker. A fitter body and more patience at the plate have made Javy Lopez one of the best batters this season.

But what about your diet and your life style? You are a baseball player who has also been in a slump. Will a better diet and exercise help you? How much does a good diet cost?

Your trainer has decided to have players on your team look at their diets to see if they can be improved. You have also been asked to prepare menus that are inexpensive and nutritionally sound.

Work with a partner when you complete activity, but each of you must hand in your own work.

Part 1
Fundamentals - What is a Balanced Diet?

Part 2
Do you think that your diet helps you play at your peak performance?

Keep a food log for two days. Record everything you eat: the number of servings of each item, and the food group that each food belongs

Compare your food log to the chart that is linked to Fundamentals - What is a Balanced Diet? Have you met the daily nutrition requirements each day? Mark this in some way on your food log.

Part 3
Use the
Menu Planner form to plan your menu for next week (7days). Make sure that each day's meals meet the daily requirements.

Part 4
You have a budget of ___________. Make a shopping list and check to see if you can buy everything you need for the amount of money in your budget. To see how close you can come to buying the food you need within your budget, take your list to a grocery store, or compare your list to the food section of a newspaper.

Part 5
If you go over your budget, make all necessary changes to your menu.


The team trainer wants to see your completed two-day food log with its analysis of your diet. The trainer also wants to see your menu for next 7 days. The trainer will check your menu to make sure that you will meet the daily requirements each day. Finally, the trainer will be looking to see if you can buy the food and stay within your budget.

Your trainer will select some players on your team to show your menus to the rest of the team. Be ready to explain your choices in case you are selected.

This activity was developed by the Event-Based Science Institute with generous support from the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation. A teacher version of this and all other baseball/biology activities is available free from the Institute. This Eating for Success activity was was written by EllaJay Parfitt, science teacher at Southeast Middle School, Baltimore, MD.

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