Cut Calories Wherever You Can
Not all calories are created equal. Yet many diets of the past failed to sufficiently distinguish between different types of calories. The scientists behind Weight Watchers (which allocates points to food based on calories and other factors) overhauled the program's methodology in 2010 to encourage people to eat more protein and fiber. This was in response to research on food density and satiety that shows these foods help fill us up and keep hunger at bay.
A better way to think about it: Focus, as experts do, on where your calories come from. Research has shown that calories from highly processed carbs, like white flour and sugar, are treated differently by the body than calories from other foods, causing blood sugar and insulin to spike, leading to fat retention. So when calories are a draw, always reach for the option with more fiber and protein and fewer grams of added sugar and refined carbs. (It's still true that if you want to lose weight, you need to consume fewer calories overall.)