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Advice Nutritionists Give—But Don't Follow

Day after day I counsel my patients on what they should do to eat well and have a healthy lifestyle. Most of these are things I also practice myself, since I feel it’s important to walk the walk and not just talk the talk. But sometimes when I give a particular piece of advice, I find myself making a mental note: “Hmmm, I should do more of that too!” For instance, as often as I tell my patients to pack a snack when traveling—especially if going to the airport—I inevitably find myself there empty-handed, having to scavenge for healthy bites before my plane departs. (Luckily those healthier options are getting easier to find.)

Truth be told, I don’t always do everything I tell my patients to do. So I decided to 'fess up and asked nine other brave nutritionists in private practice to join me. Here’s the advice they struggle to follow, even when it’s coming out of their own mouths.

Don’t Eat and Run
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“I tell my clients to eat mindfully with no interruptions at least once a day. While I know the importance of slowing down to eat and often do it myself, I still find myself eating on the go more than I'd like.” -Patricia Bannan, R.D.N., author of Eat Right When Time is Tight

Cut Back on Rice
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“When having sushi, I recommend choosing only one roll with rice and rounding out the rest of your meal with sashimi and edamame so you're not filling up on white rice. Guilty! I sometimes order a roll plus a hand roll, doubling up on my rice portion.” -Erika Horowitz, R.D.N., associate at Keri Gans Nutrition

RELATED: The Best and Worst Sushi for Weight Loss

Skip the Refill
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“I always tell my clients to drink wine more slowly and only have one glass if possible. I give them all kinds of advice on how to do this. And then I go out with the intention of having only one glass, but frequently it ends up being more like two. I just get caught up in having fun—even though in the back of my mind, I’m hearing my own voice reminding me not to.” -Martha McKittrick, R.D., nutritionist in New York City and blogger at City Girl Bites

Pack a Gym Bag
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“I tell clients to exercise more regularly, even when they’re on the go. But I am guilty of traveling light and not wanting to bring extra workout gear, especially with lots of early mornings and late nights on the road.” -Felicia D. Stoler, R.D., author of Living Skinny in Fat Genes

Mind the Morning Meal
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“I say to eat breakfast daily. And hey, I know it's the most important meal, but sometimes my dinners are late and I just don't wake up hungry, so I skip it.” -Dawn Jackson Blatner, R.D.N., author of The Flexitarian Diet

Turn Off the Tube
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“I advise not snacking in front of the television. But sometimes (often!) I just need something sweet after dinner, which is when I finally sit down, relax, and watch some TV to unwind from the day. I usually start with some fruit but end up having a treat too. My faves: dark chocolate batons from Trader Joe's or bakery cookies from the freezer.” -Jessica Fishman Levinson, R.D.N., founder of Nutritioulicious

Supplement Your Diet
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"I tell people to take their vitamins every day. But it’s a good thing that I don’t take any actual medications, because I wonder if I’d forget to take those too! Even though I always believe in getting what you can from food first, I do try to take certain supplements that I may not get enough of in my daily diet, like vitamin D, calcium, and omega-3s.” -Bonnie Taub-Dix, R.D.N., author of Read It Before You Eat It

Stave Off Hunger
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“I tell my patients to have a midday snack to prevent crazy snacking when they get home from work. But, sometimes I find myself missing my snack and doing laps in and out of the snack cabinet first thing when I walk in the door.” -Suzanne Farrell, R.D., owner Cherry Creek Nutrition

RELATED: 20 Sweet and Salty Snacks Under 200 Calories

Measure Up
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“I tell my clients to measure their food with a food scale...while I just eye up my portions.” -Jim White, R.D., owner of Jim White Fitness and Nutrition Studios

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