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Cancer Causes Control. 2004 Feb;15(1):73-82.

Adolescent diet and risk of breast cancer.

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Division of Pediatric Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, USA.



To investigate the components of adolescent diet that may influence risk of breast cancer as an adult.


Retrospective cohort study among 47,355 participants in the Nurses Health Study II who answered a 131-item food frequency questionnaire about diet during high school. Cox proportional hazards regression was used to estimate relative risks and 95% confidence intervals among incident cases of breast cancer between 1989 (inception of the study) and 1998 (when high school diet was assessed).


Intakes of fat and fiber were not significantly related to risk of breast cancer in multivariate analysis, but increased intake of vegetable fat ( Q (5) versus Q (1) multivariate RR = 0.58, 95% CI (0.38-0.86); test for trend p = 0.005) and vitamin E ( Q (5) versus Q (1) multivariate RR = 0.61, 95% CI (0.42-0.89); test for trend p = 0.003) were associated with a lower risk. A higher dietary glycemic index ( Q (5) versus Q (1) multivariate RR = 1.47, 95% CI (1.04-2.08); test for trend p = 0.01) was associated with increased risk of breast cancer.


The apparent protective effects of vegetable fat and vitamin E and adverse effect of high glycemic foods on risk of breast cancer need confirmation in prospective analyses.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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