@Harlequin: Definatly don't cut out the dairy (unless you are lactose intolerant).  Milk and cheese are good for diets because they help curb appetite and preserve muscle mass.  The calcium also helps with bones and weight loss.

I switched to unsweeted vanilla almond milk for my breakfast cereal though.  It has a fraction of the calories of milk and it tastes very close to regular milk (to me anyway).

I would stay in the 1300 to 1500 calorie range as the minimum.  Starving yourself only forces your body to try and store more fat.  In that range I still had enough energy to do excercise.