Hi James. I do have a diet. Actually, I'm the author of "One Size Does NOT Fit All Diet Plan: Meal Planning That Will Boost Your Metabolism, Break Through Plateaus, and Help You Achieve Maximum Fat Loss!" It was recently published in January.
I often hear that it's as simple as counting calories and exercise. But, it's not that simple. I have worked with thousands of clients over the last 10 years, and most people don't want to count calories. In fact, most find it tedious and time consuming. They hate it. It rarely ever works for someone who is trying to lose weight because frustration sets in and the diet stops.
Learning healthy nutrition habits is the first key. Yes, calories do count but only to a certain extent. However, counting junk food calories is non-sense. Replacing processed and junk foods is necessary. That doesn't mean fast foods are out of the picture. We just need to remember that fruit and raw veggies can be fast foods. In fact, they are faster to pull from the refrigerator drawer than sitting in line at McDonalds, Burger King, etc.
A balanced diet is also necessary. That includes lean proteins, healthy carbs, and essential fats. Green and colorful veggies should be top priority when it comes to carbs. Limited fruits and starches come only after those veggies.
Most people don't realize that natural (non-processed) foods are full of nutrients (i.e., vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients) whereas most boxed foods are not. Studies even show that natural foods are 50 percent more thermogenic (fat burning) than packaged and processed foods. So, it's not as simple as "calories in / calories out."
Nutrient timing is also important when it comes to losing body fat (not just body weight). It's important to eat according to your activity level, as well as to eat the appropriate foods for your activity. Your body and brain both require more nutrients when it's more active. It's just common sense. Thus, high activity also requires glycogen replenishment in the way of starchy carbs (i.e., oats, rice, potatoes, sweet potatoes, etc.) after a strenuous workout. This keeps your thyroid and metabolism functioning properly.
Anyway, that's my two cents as a professional nutritionist. ;)