I’m not anywhere near a dietary researcher…. but I always suspected this is true.

And that is… when it comes to losing weight; the quality of your food beats the quantity of your calories.

And now researchers at Stanford University's 12-month weight loss study of 609 individuals found the tactic of choosing whole, unprocessed foods and not worrying about calories resulted in similar weight loss for people following two kinds of diets.

"I was very happy when I read it," Maya Feller, a New York-based dietitian, said of the study, published Tuesday in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Feller said staying within calorie limits doesn't necessarily mean making good nutrition choices.

Feller recommends setting a goal to eat two to three servings of fruit per day and consuming a minimum of two servings of non-starchy vegetables at both lunch and dinner.

People concerned about portion size can focus on dividing their plates, Feller suggested. Half of the plate should have vegetables, one-fourth should have lean protein and one-fourth should have grains or starchy vegetables.