“A touch of talent, a hint of love and a little bit of passion all sprinkled with good humour, that’s the recipe for great food. It’s as simple as that,” explained Carl Shi, the chef leading young athletes in the Healthy Eating Zone in the Nanjing Youth Olympic Village, which formed part of the Culture and Education Programme at the YOG.
Guided by the YOG’s Young Ambassadors, the athletes were able to learn how a healthy and balanced diet is key to staying healthy as well as a having a long and successful athletic career.
“They’re really busy,” continued Shi. “They train, train and train some more. They never have time. But it doesn’t take long to cook something healthy and that’s what we’re trying to encourage.”
“We focus on the importance of having a balanced diet,” explained Jenna Ballam, a sports nutritionist involved in the activity.
“Having a varied diet, making sure to include enough protein and carbohydrates, eating lots of vegetables but also about eating before a competition, what you need to recover properly and how to stay well hydrated,” she added.
The Healthy Eating Zone served up plenty of food for thought, and judging by the crowds that packed around the stand every day, and the enthusiasm shown by the youngsters donning chefs hats and aprons, the message clearly hit home.