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Cancer Causes Control. 2009 Dec;20(10):1845-53. doi: 10.1007/s10552-009-9377-0.

Meat and egg consumption and risk of breast cancer among Chinese women.

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Department of Community and Family Medicine, School of Public Health, Prince of Wales Hospital, Chinese University of Hong Kong, 4th Floor, Shatin NT, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, People's Republic of China.



The association between meat and egg consumption and breast cancer risk has been examined in previous studies, but the results were inconsistent. We conducted a hospital-based case-control study during June 2007 to August 2008 among Guangdong Chinese women to investigate associations between meat and egg intake and breast cancer risk.


Four hundred and thirty-eight consecutively recruited cases with primary breast cancer were frequency matched to 438 controls by age (5-year interval) and residence (rural/urban). Dietary intake was assessed by face-to-face interviews using a validated food frequency questionnaire. Odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence interval (CI) were obtained by using multiple unconditional logistic regression adjusted for various dietary and nondietary confounders.


We observed a borderline increased association of processed meat intake with breast cancer risk (trend test p = 0.066). The multivariate-adjusted OR of breast cancer risk for the highest versus the lowest quartile was 1.44 (95% CI = 0.97–2.15). No significant association was found between total and red meat, poultry, fish, and egg intake and risk.


This study suggested that processed meat intake was associated with a possible increased risk of breast cancer. There was no significant association between consumption of total and red meat, poultry, fish, or egg with breast cancer risk.

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