The food pyramid recommends I eat most of my calories from cereals and other carbohydrates.
There is no scientific evidence that carbohydrates need to be most of your diet, calorie-wise.
You might need a very small amount of them, to jump start your day, maybe, but no reason to fill half your plate with them.
A diet of only protein and veggies is a lot better for me. I am overweight, but I do lose weight if I diet, I just cut as many carbs as possible, add as many veggies as possible, make sure all meal have enough protein, and not care about fats. If I add exercise, I can lose 2-4 pounds a week. I managed to lose over 40 pounds that way. Gained half that over several years of bad diet, no exercise.
Before that strategy, I tried several times low calorie, "balanced" diet, with exercise, I might lose 2 pounds in a month. My doctor says that carbs are bad specially when you are fat, and many fat people benefit from cutting carbs.
Also, most importantly, there's a psychological side to this. Eating is not something yo decide to do, it's more like an addiction. Some foods make you more likely to keep your diet. That's very important. Losing weight can be an test on discipline, but it's much better if some technique is found that helps you lose weight _without_ discipline. That would help more people.