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Celebrate Thanksgiving in moderation

"Today" food editor Phil Lempert offers some quick tips to help you enjoy a happy, healthy and delicious Thanksgiving with your family and friends.

The holiday doesn't have to be one of those gatherings where you feel (and look) ashamed afterwards. Neither is it something you "survive." This Thanksgiving, we'll equip you with basic caloric information on some holiday favorites and healthy eating tips. It's up to you to choose and portion things wisely so that you don't end up looking at your belt notch in shame.

Remember, Thanksgiving is a joyous occasion and one overindulgent meal won't be the one that makes you gain. It's the many large meals in a row that will do you in. Here are some tips to help:

  • Use a smaller plate.
  • Eat what you like, but in smaller portions.
  • Drink lots of water.
  • Don't starve yourself for the "feast" or "feasts."
  • Eat slowly.
  • Eat plenty of salad and vegetables.
  • Limit your drinking to one glass of red wine.
  • When you feel full, stop eating (if it helps, wear a belt.)
  • Go for a walk after the meal.
  • Exercise (make it a family event.)

Turkey Day favorites
And here's some basic nutrition information for those Turkey Day favorites (and remember a serving size should be just about four to five ounces of turkey or other meat):

Roasted turkey (4 oz.): 153 calories, 5 g fat, 1.5 g saturated fat, less than 1 g carbohydrates, 92.5 mg cholesterol, 397.5 mg sodium.

Pumpkin pie (5.4 oz.): 260 calories, 12 g fat, 7 g saturated fat, 33 g carbohydrates, 85 mg cholesterol, 250 mg sodium.

Gravy (2.2 oz.): 80 calories, 7 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 3 g carbohydrates, 5 mg cholesterol, 40 mg sodium.

Mashed potatoes (8.3 oz.): 230 calories, 6 g fat, 4 g saturated fat, 39 g carbohydrates, 15 mg cholesterol, 30 mg sodium.

Candied yams (6.0 oz.): 170 calories, 2.5 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 37 g carbohydrates,

Cranberry sauce (3.6 oz.): 120 calories, 0 g fat, 0 g saturated fat, 31 g carbohydrates, 0 mg cholesterol, 0 mg sodium.

Stuffing (3.8 oz.): 160 calories, 7 g fat, 4 g saturated fat, 21 g carbohydrates, 15 mg cholesterol, 220 mg sodium.

The nutritional information provided by are rough estimates as calories and other nutrients absorbed or lost during the cooking process are difficult to estimate. Our recipes are very basic and no doubt vary a bit from yours, they also do not include additional toppings, and only account for minimal seasoning.

Phil Lempert is food editor of the “Today” show. He welcomes questions and comments, which can be sent to or by using the mail box below. For more about the latest trends on the supermarket shelves, visit Phil’s Web site at .