As the New Year sets in, it is, unfortunately, a time for many of us to start diets, or resolve to eat healthier in 2017. Unfortunately? I must have misspoken because here, in Pennsylvania’s Americana Region, clean eating and healthy living is easy, fun, and delicious! In fact, it’s as easy as shopping our many farmers markets.

The farmers markets across Reading, and Berks County offer a ready supply of fresh produce, even in winter. Forget costly, frozen diet meals. Instead, head to Leesport Farmer’s Market, Renninger’s in Kutztown, and Frecon Farm in Boyertown, to stock up on fresh, and healthier alternatives. Not only will you find a bounty of great foods at great prices, you’ll enjoy the experience. Where else can you shop for food, browse flea market, and antiques stands, or catch a lifestock auction? What’s more, in PA’s Americana Region, “going to market” is a social event. Become a “regular,” and before long, you’ll enjoy the camaraderie of your shopping routine.

In addition to our tried-and-true farmers markets, the Rodale Institute provides a place to learn how to raise your own organic fruits, and vegetables. After all, Rodale has been at the forefront of the organic foods movement for decades and has perfected the craft of growing delicious, nutrient-dense foods. At various times of the year, you can you grab fresh, organic fruits and veggies, and pesticide and nitrate-free meats to create yummy meals.

Be sure to make these wonderful places part of your grocery shopping routine. As the pounds start to roll-off, and the weather begins to warm up, there are even more shopping options. Outdoor markets, like Reading’s Penn Street Market, and West Reading Farmers Market will open for business, offering even more options for fresh and fabulous foods. By all means, bring the kids on your market excursions. Let them enjoy the region’s best treasures, while learning how to eat clean, and choose healthy foods.