Rob Stinson is a familiar figure on the Gulf Coast region around New Orleans and neighboring Mississippi, not only as a restauranteur with five area eateries such as the award-winning Saluté Italian Restaurant in New Orleans in his portfolio, but also as a TV star with two local cooking shows currently airing. Stinson is also a tireless promoter of the healthy eating message, not only through his restaurants and media presence but also an initiative called Eat Right Meal Prep that provides fresh, nutritious meals to discharged patients at Memorial Hospital in Gulfport, Miss., as well as the hospital’s staff and its affiliated doctors’ offices.
The service is in addition to Memorial’s own in-house patient feeding and retail dining operations, though there is an Eat Right Meal Prep pickup point inside the hospital. Customers can also pick up their Eat Right Meal Prep meals at a local health club, Bayou Fitness, or have them delivered to their homes for an additional charge.
“We’re really more a referral,” explains Stinson, “so when someone leaves the hospital and their cardiologist has said to them, ‘You know, you really need to have a vegan diet,’ we can easily provide that.” In addition to informing discharged patients, the hospital sent information about the availability of the program to its 5,600 employees and to 110 physician’s offices with which it is affiliated.
Eat Right Meal Prep was launched three years ago in partnership with Bayou Fitness.
“They approached me because they were looking for a healthy menu their fitness trainers could pitch to clients,” Stinson explains. “I already had a large catering company that worked out of the Saluté kitchen and I saw the demand for healthy catered food, so we got serious and created Eat Right Meal Prep.”
Photo: Eat Right Meal Prep orders can be customized for diet preferences like keto, double protein, gluten-free and seafood-free.
Credit: Eat Right Meal Prep
The initiative debuted at Memorial Hospital in January “because I figured that after the holidays and with COVID preventing many people from getting out to exercise, January was going to be a great month for New Year’s resolutions to get healthy,” Stinson notes, emphasizing that all the food is fresh—never frozen—and made from scratch with quality ingredients. “It’s weekly meal plans that we bring to any employee and any patient—anyone at all that is affiliated through the hospital and it gives them certified healthy food.”
The program offers a weekly customizable menu of five, 10 or 15 meals a week, including breakfasts, lunches and dinners. Options include keto, double protein, gluten-free and seafood-free plans and the packages are designed to be affordable.
“If they get 15 meals for a week—three meals a day for five days, which is one of the options—it comes to $6.33 a meal,” Stinson offers, “and this is five-star food that is analyzed to be nutritious by a hospital standard that you can’t find that anywhere else.”