A low-sodium diet can be a savior, especially for those suffering from sky-high blood pressure. The recommended intake is 1,500-2,300 mg, after all, and the average American inhales over 3,000 mg. But the plot thickens! A new analysis of previous research—published in the American Journal of Hypertension—reports that rapidly cutting sodium from your diet can actually increase your total cholesterol by about 2.5 percent; a spike that can lead to heart disease or even heart attacks. But take it with a grain of salt for now. The studies involved in the new research were about 30 days long or less—certainly not long enough to determine if the cholesterol fluctuations would continue.