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Int J Food Sci Nutr. 2009;60 Suppl 6:1-13.

Effectiveness of whole grain consumption in the prevention of colorectal cancer: meta-analysis of cohort studies.

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Department of Food Science and Technology (CAL), Federal University of Santa Catarina-Florianópolis, SC, Brazil.


The present work aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of whole grain consumption in preventing colorectal cancer. A systematic review with meta-analysis of 11 cohort studies was carried out. The age group of the population studied (1,719,590 participants) was between 25 and 76 years of age. The review evaluated the relative risks with the Cox proportional hazard model. The period of study varied from 6 to 16 years, where 7,745 persons developed colorectal cancer during the follow-up period. In the multivariate analysis, the highest quintile relative risk was 0.94 (95% confidence interval, 0.85-1.03), whereas that for the lowest quintile was 0.96 (95% confidence interval, 0.88-1.04). The location of tumors was also evaluated, with tumors in the colon demonstrating a relative risk of 0.93 (95% confidence interval, 0.83-1.02) and tumors in the recto a relative risk equal to 0.89 (95% confidence interval, 0.79-1.00). In this multivariate analysis, consumption of whole grains was inversely associated with the risk of developing colorectal cancer.

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