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J Natl Cancer Inst. 2008 Dec 3;100(23):1695-706. doi: 10.1093/jnci/djn386. Epub 2008 Nov 25.

Fat, protein, and meat consumption and renal cell cancer risk: a pooled analysis of 13 prospective studies.

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Channing Laboratory, Brigham and Women's Hospital, and Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA.



Results of several case-control studies suggest that high consumption of meat (all meat, red meat, or processed meat) is associated with an increased risk of renal cell cancer, but only a few prospective studies have examined the associations of intakes of meat, fat, and protein with renal cell cancer.


We conducted a pooled analysis of 13 prospective studies that included 530,469 women and 244,483 men and had follow-up times of up to 7-20 years to examine associations between meat, fat, and protein intakes and the risk of renal cell cancer. All participants had completed a validated food frequency questionnaire at study entry. Using the primary data from each study, we calculated the study-specific relative risks (RRs) for renal cell cancer by using Cox proportional hazards models and then pooled these RRs by using a random-effects model. All statistical tests were two-sided.


A total of 1,478 incident cases of renal cell cancer were identified (709 in women and 769 in men). We observed statistically significant positive associations or trends in pooled age-adjusted models for intakes of total fat, saturated fat, monounsaturated fat, polyunsaturated fat, cholesterol, total protein, and animal protein. However, these associations were attenuated and no longer statistically significant after adjusting for body mass index, fruit and vegetable intake, and alcohol intake. For example, the pooled age-adjusted RR of renal cell cancer for the highest vs the lowest quintile of intake for total fat was 1.30 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.08 to 1.56; P(trend) = .001) and for total protein was 1.17 (95% CI = 0.99 to 1.38; P(trend) = .02). By comparison, the pooled multivariable RR for the highest vs the lowest quintile of total fat intake was 1.10 (95% CI = 0.92 to 1.32; P(trend) = .31) and of total protein intake was 1.06 (95% CI = 0.89 to 1.26; P(trend) = .37). Intakes of red meat, processed meat, poultry, or seafood were not associated with the risk of renal cell cancer.


Intakes of fat and protein or their subtypes, red meat, processed meat, poultry, and seafood are not associated with risk of renal cell cancer.

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