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A CARROT A DAY: Your mom told you that carrots are good for the eyes; she probably didn't know that they also help fight cancer and heart disease. Here are easy ways to work them into your family's diet:

Puree cooked carrots and use to thicken soup.

Finely grated carrots will add vitamins and reduce the acidity of commercial tomato sauces.

Chopped leftover cooked carrots can extend meatloaf or meatballs.

Grate carrots and toss them with lemon juice and black pepper, as the French do. Serve alone or with diced pickled beets as an appetizer.

Cut carrots into thin matchsticks to garnish soup.

Peel paper-thin strips, roll them up and let sit in ice water to create carrot curls.

Cook grated carrots in boiling water 1 to 2 minutes, drain and add to mashed potatoes.

_ Adapted from the 1998 Old Farmer's Almanac Good Cook's Companion.

FOLIC ACID BY THE BOWLFUL: Your breakfast cereal could literally be a lifesaver. Adding extra folic acid to breakfast cereals may help prevent cardiovascular disease, potentially saving the lives of 50,000 Americans a year, according to a new study.

Folic acid is already being added to cereals in higher levels than ever before in light of evidence that the vitamin, found in spinach and other leafy green vegetables, can prevent some types of birth defects in newborns, but the new study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, may demonstrate that even higher levels of folic acid are desirable.

NEW FROM NEWMAN: Paul Newman fans, your hero has unveiled the latest addition to his Newman's Own line _ Newman's Own Ice Cream. As with his other food products, Newman will donate all proceeds for sales of the ice cream to charitable and educational causes.

RECIPES INCLUDED: Reynolds Wrap is including recipe packets on the outside of its rolls of aluminum foil. Naturally, all the recipes require wrapping food in aluminum packets. One box included recipes for chicken, fish and corn on the cob packets.

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