Utahns worried about keeping their bellies from turning to bowls full of jelly this holiday can still hoist a little seasonal cheer.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has agreed to allow about a dozen dairy companies nationwide, including Western Dairymen Cooperative Inc., of Salt Lake City, to sell a new "light eggnog" in limited distribution areas.The eggnog contains 75 percent less fat and one-third of the calories of the usual dairy drink.

"We've had a flurry of these light eggnog approvals just in the last couple of months," said FDA spokesman Chris Lecos.

"Because of the general calorie-consciousness of Americans today, there has been an increased amount of effort and emphasis by the food industry to market these products (with) the word `light' on them," he said.

Eggnog - a mixture of milk and beaten eggs to which liquor is often added - generally has a fat content of about 6 percent, but most of the reduced-calorie versions the government has approved have only 1 percent fat content.

FDA approval of the temporary, 15-month permits to market the drink was necessary because the product deviates from official government standards.

"FDA has a specific standard of what eggnog must be in order to be eggnog," the FDA spokesman said. "The predominant feature is the fat content."