Just as a doc-approved drug holiday can lift your spirits, so can a holiday pig-out you’ll never find in heart-smart cookbooks. If high cholesterol or blood sugar has carved the fat and bad carbs from your diet, relax, pilgrim. Toronto HIV specialist Irving Salit, MD, says, “Occasionally going off a diet is probably a healthy thing, helping you be more adherent in the long run.”

The real danger hides in the fridge afterward, as you douse turkey remains in fatty gravy, add scoops of mayo to moisten a turkey salad or reheat sweet potatoes topped with brown sugar and marshmallows.

Give thanks for these recipes (soup adapted from FoodFit.com), which knife cholesterol, not flavor. For these leftovers, we’ll be right over.   

Tex-Mex Turkey Soup
Makes: 6 generous servings (add salad and bread for a complete meal)

1) In a heavy soup pot, warm a tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add1 medium onion, coarsely chopped; 2 cloves chopped garlic; and 4 ounces pasta (break up long pasta). Cook for a few minutes, stirring frequently until the mixture starts to turn golden.

2) Add one 15-ounce can crushed tomatoes; 3 cups drained, canned pinto beans (or kidney or cannellini beans); 6 cups low-sodium turkey or chicken stock;  and 1/4 teaspoon Cajun seasoning (or mix oregano and paprika or cayenne pepper). Bring the mixture to a boil, then lower heat and simmer for 10 minutes.

3) Add 1 3/4 cups diced or shredded leftover turkey and pepper to taste. Cook until meat is thoroughly heated. Sprinkle a generous handful of chopped,fresh cilantro or parsley to top off the bowls of soup.

Low-Fat Turkey Wraps
Makes: 4 generous wraps

1) For the dressing, mix 1/4 cup low-fat mayonnaise with 1/4 cup of yogurt. Stir in 1 tablespoon of one of the following: chopped roasted red peppers, chopped chipotles, chopped cilantro or a good mustard.

2) Dice 1 large tomato and 1/2 medium red onion (add 1 diced avocado if desired). Chop 1/2 cup leftover turkey.

3) Spread dressing equally on each of 4 (preferably low-fat) whole wheat tortillas.

4) Layer 3 leaves romaine lettuce on each tortilla, pressing leaves into the dressing.

5) Place 1/4 of the turkey and chopped vegetables from step 2 on half the surface of each of the tortillas.

6) Roll each wrap tightly, like a jelly roll, starting from the turkey and veggies end. Then wrap each roll individually and refrigerate for 1 hour. To serve, slice each in halves, quarters or bite-size rounds.