Whether you’re desperate to lose a fast few pounds or want to shed a lot more, you might consider cutting carbohydrates from your diet completely. Think again. The lean protein and vegetables only diet women often default to may not be the healthiest or most effective for long-term success. In fact, carbs are a necessary element in a woman’s diet. Before we go on and on about why we love carbs (who doesn’t?) let’s be clear – we are referring to good carbohydrates, not the French fries and cupcakes you might long for. Instead, we’re advocating for Resistant Starch. A Resistant Starch is a unique kind of fiber, and includes potatoes (not fried), corn and rice. Typically, we stay away from these seemingly gluttonous diet indulgences, but research is now showing these satisfying foods could be the secret weapon to weight loss. A study done at the University of Surrey in the United Kingdom discovered that eating Resistant Starch in one meal lead to participants consuming 10% fewer calories the next day. Resistant Starch actually curbs your appetite while also helping you burn more calories. Carbs high in Resistant Starch speed up your metabolism and your body’s other natural fat burners. How cool is that!? (via health.com) Additionally, carbs have been shown to enhance your mood through the production of the feel-good chemical serotonin. In a study from the Archives of Internal Medicine, people who followed a very low carbohydrate diet for a year experienced more depression, anxiety and anger than those assigned to a low-fat, high-carb diet that focused on low-fat dairy, whole grains, fruit and beans. (via eatingwell.com) So the next time you want to skip out on that baked potato or side of brown rice for fear they will cause weight gain, consider satisfying your cravings by saying yes to those carbs. Not only will you be supporting your body on its weight lose journey, but your mind will feel empowered that you didn’t deprive yourself. By allowing yourself “permission” to eat good carbs you will have less tendency to binge or fall off your diet when you nosh on that slice of bread. As with anything, don’t go overboard on portion sizes and stay away from sugar-loaded and fried foods. Enjoy yourself and your body!