OLYMPIC-SIZED TASK FOR NU­TRI­TION­IST

Cana­dian of­fi­cial preps for any con­tin­gency in Rio

Winnipeg Free Press - Section D - - SAVOUR - LOIS ABRAHAM

TORONTO o’clock in the morn­ing or if an ath­lete has dop­ing tests and there wouldn’t be any food — just pizza and pasta, for ex­am­ple. Not enough pro­tein, not enough sub­stan­tial food for them to re­cover prop­erly and get ready for the next day,” Naul­leau said in an in­ter­view from Mon­treal.

“So we thought about it a lot be­cause we had so lit­tle in­for­ma­tion back then about the food and what would be avail­able and so we shipped the most we can and I’m pretty sure we’re go­ing to use it all.”

But when she fi­nally saw the pro­vi­sional food lineup early in July she was re­lieved.

“The menu’s go­ing to be in­cred­i­ble. There’s go­ing to be lots of va­ri­ety... so ev­ery­one will be happy,” she said.

Rio or­ga­niz­ers say they are of­fer­ing 24-hour din­ing ser­vice with plenty of healthy choices and lo­cal cui­sine.

The 24,700-square-me­tre cafe­te­ria could ac­com­mo­date five jumbo jets and or­ga­niz­ers ex­pect to serve 60,000 meals a day, the Olympic web­site says.

Ath­letes on the run will be given a packed cold meal or food at their venue.

Naul­leau, who has worked with the syn­chro­nized swim­ming, short-track speed­skat­ing and para-cy­cling teams in the last Olympic cy­cles and ac­com­pa­nied Canada to Sochi in 2014, says her main role is to make sure all ath­letes have what they need.

She started her prepa­ra­tion two years ago. In Rio, she’ll be mak­ing sure ath­letes with di­etary con­cerns and al­ler­gies have equip­ment, food and space set aside for them.

In the ship­ment, she in­cluded small grillers that will be re­served for gluten-free food. She’s learned the main cafe­te­ria will also have a ded­i­cated gluten-free sec­tion.

Lo­cat­ing places to buy items such as al­mond milk for lac­tose-in­tol­er­ant ath­letes was part of Naul­leau’s factfind­ing trip in Novem­ber when she toured the Olympic venues and sur­round­ing area.

“It’s nice to look around and see what’s avail­able — gro­cery stores, restau­rants, where can we go eat, where can ath­letes go to eat with their families, how long does it take to travel from one venue to the vil­lage,” she said.

Ath­letes are ad­vised to eat and drink in the vil­lage or at com­pe­ti­tion venues to avoid in­testi­nal bugs. Naul­leau has a list of lo­cal restau­rants guar­an­tee- ing use of safe wa­ter in food prep if ath­letes de­cide to eat off-site.

Hunger or stress can lead to overeat­ing or poor choices, and with the mas­sive amounts of food avail­able 24 hours a day in the vil­lage, ath­letes will need to take care.

“Usu­ally, the din­ing hall is wellde­signed so all the crappy food will be at the far, far end and the health­ier food will be at the be­gin­ning of the cafe­te­ria,” said Naul­leau.

Get­ting to McDon­ald’s will take some ef­fort, she added.

“It’s go­ing to be in the vil­lage plaza in the in­ter­na­tional zone so ath­letes will have to go through se­cu­rity if they want to have a burger,” she said. “It’s not go­ing to be open 24 hours.”

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