Don't eat your favorite foods. Never snack between meals. Always avoid the scale. When it comes to shedding pounds, you've probably heard it all. But unfortunately, these tiny tidbits could end up doing you more harm than good. Want tried-and-true advice that really works?  Here, we reveal the five most effective diet tips of all time.

1. Grab a snack. It's often said that you shouldn't eat between meals, but diet experts disagree. Most research suggests that eating six small meals a day, as opposed to three large ones, helps to maintain energy and keeps blood-sugar levels from plummeting. What's more, according to a study published in the British Medical Journal, nibbling throughout the day helps to jump-start your metabolism, allowing your body to process calories more efficiently.

2. Hop on the scale. While diet experts once advised against weighing yourself on a daily basis, patients enrolled in the National Weight Control Registry have proven that weighing yourself every day on the same scale can help people to lose weight and keep it off. Experts attribute the scale's effectiveness to the fact that people can catch small changes as they occur and take measures to correct any weight gain immediately.

3. Don't deprive yourself. Eliminating favorite foods from your diet can actually have adverse effects on your diet goals. People who sacrifice their favorite treats often wind up eating several other foods to replace the ones they gave up because they didn't feel satisfied. Most experts believe that it's okay to eat virtually any food-the key is moderation. Treating yourself to an occasional reward can actually be a practical way to limit unhealthy splurges.

4. Value your veggies and fruits. Fruits and vegetables are perfect diet foods-loaded with fiber to help you feel full and packed with vitamins and nutrients to help prevent disease. But a study conducted by the John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Health revealed that only 11 percent of U.S. adults are meeting the USDA guidelines for fruit and vegetable intake. Be sure to keep both fresh and frozen produce on hand, for a healthy side dish or a quick snack.

5. Enlist the experts. Rather than try to arbitrarily figure out what's going to work for you, check in with those who know for sure. For example, a nutritionist or registered dietician will be able to set you up with an easy-to-follow eating regimen, while a personal trainer can design a strength-training program around your individual needs. Worried about these expenses burning a hole in your pocket? Consider consulting students in a nutrition program at your local college, or meet with a trainer once or twice, just to get motivated.