Eyewitness news reporter Jennifer Lee tells us how we can still enjoy the traditional dishes without packing the pounds.
"Turkey... I wait all year for turkey," says one Utica resident.
It's that time of year. Familiy and friends gather around the dinner table, indulging in holiday treats.
"The sharing with the family.. The get together with the friends... That's what it's all about," says Robert Brooks.
According to the American Heart Association, people on average gain 7 to 9 pounds this holiday season.
"Especially in this area when its colder and people tend to be inside and less active.. Plus the celebration... Richer foods fattier foods going on," says Dr. Frank Dubeck.
The American Heart Association says people add on the few extra pounds from thanksgiving through New Year's Day.
"There's so much food set out on the table. They will eat a little and take a break and watch a football game and later on go back for desert," says one Rome resident.
Doctor Dubeck, the president of the American Heart Association says gaining those few pounds can lead to health risks.
"Not so much the pounds but the high fat diet and the alcohol may affect your triglycerides and cholesterol, which can increase your risk to heart disease and stroke," says Dr. Dubeck.
Dr. Dubeck says it's all about eating in moderation and staying active through the holiday season.
He says just imagine the size of a deck of cards.
"So when the turkey platter comes don't take three slices of a full breast. Look at it as a deck of cards and say I'm only going to take this much," explains Dr. Dubeck.
Also, you may want skip out on the heavy stuff. If you are drinking hot chocolate or egg nog, substitute the cream with low-fat or skim milk. And skip the whip cream.