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A Healthy Thanksgiving Makeover

10 surprising ways that Thanksgiving, including your favorite potatoes and pie, can be really good for you.

By Leslie Goldman

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slice of pumpkin pie
Scott Little
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4. Pass the (skinnier) pumpkin pie, please

Typical T-Day: You can't really go too wrong with pumpkin pie. Pumpkin is naturally low in calories and high in vitamin A, which helps form and maintain healthy teeth, skin, and eyes (the better to spy your son's cell phone hidden beneath the dinner table). The seeds can be roasted for a nutty-tasting snack that's high in good-for-you fats, and some studies suggest components in pumpkin seed oil may be beneficial for prostate health.

Tradition makeover: Go for the gourd with an even skinnier dessert that still feels indulgent. Chef Cliff Pleau of Seasons 52, a nationwide chain of calorie-conscious grill-and-wine bars, serves mini "pumpkin pies" with gingersnap "crust": Spoon your favorite pumpkin pie filling into pretty 4-ounce glass cups (try cordial glasses), layering with crushed gingersnaps. Top with a dollop of real whipped cream and a gingersnap. "The flavor profile of gingersnaps is so intense, you don't need many of them," Pleau says. Plus, you'll save about 100 calories and 7 grams of fat by ditching the buttery piecrust.

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