Supporting local agriculture has never been more fulfilling.

By Wholtone (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons

By Wholtone (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons

Us Spa Week staffers are very fortunate. Besides getting first hand access to some of the best beauty, health and wellness products and services out there to report on for our beloved readers, we also happen to work in one of the most beautifully bustling neighborhoods in downtown New York City: Union Square. Conveniently surrounded by Chelsea, Flatiron, Gramercy Park, Greenwich Village and the East Village, this lively intersection has it all: art, culture, parks, shopping, dining-the works. But perhaps one of our favorite features of this famed location is the Union Square Greenmarket.

Just a block from the Spa Week headquarters, hundreds of vendors set up shop four days a week, year-round, to sell the freshest  produce, meats, cheeses and baked goods, flowers, plants and everything in between to thousands of NYC patrons. With autumn in full swing, it’s the perfect time of year to get out and take advantage of all the seasonal harvest items that can do wonders for body and mind. Since we’re all about bringing the spa lifestyle to you, here are some of our top farmer’s market purchases to help you “de-stress for less.”

Pumpkin

The most popular decoration of the fall season is so much more than just porch adornment. Stock up on organic pumpkins to create your very own at-home spa treatments. Rich in Vitamin A and antioxidants, pumpkin is great for leaving skin smooth and even helps to fight wrinkles. We especially love these super-easy pumpkin face mask and pumpkin body scrub recipes from beauty expert Erika Katz. Not only is it great for slathering on your skin, pumpkin also boasts incredible nutritional value. Throw those leftover carving scraps into some of your favorite recipes for a healthy twist—and don’t forget to bake the seeds, they’re healthy too!

Lavender

This pretty purple plant most commonly known for its strong yet therapeutic scent will bloom well into the late fall, so there’s still plenty of time to stock up. No need to overspend on essential oils or pricey candles; create your very own aromatherapy experience at home with these magical herbs. They’re also great for keeping at the office to help create (and keep) peace and calm even in the most hectic work environment. Feeling crafty? Custom make your very own lavender sachets–they make for great gifts!

Organic Root Vegetables

Eating fresh, organic vegetables that are in season is a great way to become more in-tune with nature and your own nutritional needs. Take a break from the supermarket and browse the farmer’s market instead for popular fall ingredients like beets, sweet potatoes, yams and turnips. These root veggies are not only packed with vitamins but also possess stress fighting nutrients like beta-carotene, iron and potassium. Something to keep in mind when preparing that sweet potato casserole this Thanksgiving! Talk about food for thought.

Even just browsing the farmer’s market on a sunny day can do wonders. Whether you’re on your lunch break or making a day out of it, soak up some Vitamin D while sipping a hot apple cider or savoring in some gluten-free treats. You can even catch a cooking demonstration or partake in some wine tasting. To find a farmer’s market near you, click here, and if you’re ever in Union Square, we’ll see you at the Greenmarket!

Kelly Verdi is the Public Relations Manager at Spa Week Media Group. She loves dogs, 80 minute facials and a good blowout worth bragging about.

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