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Just A Thought: Everyone wants to save their appetites for the big feast but it's good to have some quick, light appetizers that you can put out before the feast (if your family is having a Thanksgiving dinner) or after the feast, once people get hungry again (if your family is gathering for a Thanksgiving lunch.)

Some easy appetizers for light munching:

Fruit and cheese platter (buy presliced and prepared fruit if you're short on time). Some fruits that complement cheese nicely are pears, apples, grapes, and melon.
Veggie platter (buy presliced or diced vegetables if you are short on time). Good vegetables to use are celery sticks, baby carrots, zucchini and cucumber coins, broccoli and cauliflower florets, sugar snap peas, cherry or grape tomatoes, etc.
Soup can be light if it's broth- or tomato-based (and not creamy or cheesy). You can have homemade soup made and ready to warm up, or keep some store-bought favorites on hand.
A nice hot dip or spread, such as my Parmesan Artichoke Dip, can be quite satisfying when served with high-fiber bread or crackers.

Parmesan Artichoke Dip
WebMD Weight Loss Clinic members: Journal as: 1/2 cup vegetables with 1 teaspoon fat + 2 ounces low-fat cheese
OR 1 cup cream-based soup.

4 ounces light cream cheese
1/2 cup light mayonnaise
1 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
3/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
14-ounce can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
2 tablespoons dry white wine
1/4 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
1 to 2 tablespoons mild, chopped, canned green chilies

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Add cream cheese, mayonnaise, and garlic to a small mixing bowl and beat on medium low until blended. Add remaining ingredients and mix well.
3. Spoon mixture into a 1 1/2 quart casserole or baking dish and bake until bubbly (about 30 minutes).

Yield: 6 servings

Nutritional Information: Per serving (not including the bread): 164 calories, 6 g protein, 11 g carbohydrate, 10 g fat (4 g saturated fat), 13 mg cholesterol, 4 g fiber, 352 mg sodium. Calories from fat: 55%.

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