You must monitor whatever you eat - everything (boullion cube, sugar packages, fiber and fish oil supplements). The most important information to record is Calories, Protein, Carbohydrates, and Fat.
Before I discovered Fat Secret, I developed an Excel spreadsheet to do this, but this site makes it SO much easier. If you have a smart phone, the Fat Secret app is a must, and a Godsend. It is so easy.
Use an online calculator to determine your Body Mass Index (BMI), and your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) to determine where you want your ideal weight to be, and how many calories you burn just by your body's own metabolic rate. Activity is the next thing you must determine to calculate approximately how many calories you burn in a day.
Calories taken in - (minus) calories burned = net calories. We ALWAYS want negative net calories so we can ALWAYS be losing weight.
DO NOT FUDGE THESE NUMBERS. If your ideal caloric intake is 4000 but REALLY is 3000, you will be tempted to eat more because it is "OK", and wonder why it is taking so long to lose weight.
It takes 3500 calories to lose a pound of fat. How bad do you want to lose? You may want to consult your doctor, but I hate being fat and I LOVE to see the pounds come off, so I am limiting my caloric intake to 1400 calories. This is difficult, and I am hungry often - but LOOK AT THE SCALE. That is so motivating. Buy a digital scale and get a rush watching the weight come off.
Eat small meals often (100 to 200 calories). This will keep your body from thinking it is starving. 1 or 2 big meals will tell your body that food is scarce, and it will store what you eat. Not what we want. Let your body know there is plenty of food so it burns off the excess fat.
Eat no-to-low fat foods that are high in protein, take multi-vitamins, fish oil tablets, and fiber pills to stay healthy. PLEASE go online to see the benefits of vitamins, fish oil and fiber. I could go on for days but the research has already been done.
This diet works for me. Good luck if you try it. I have gone from a 42' waist to a 34". Cut 5 new holes in my belt. People do double takes when they see me. I am almost there!