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J Nutr. 2013 May;143(5):672-81. doi: 10.3945/jn.112.168658. Epub 2013 Mar 13.

Trans fatty acid intake is associated with increased risk and n3 fatty acid intake with reduced risk of non-hodgkin lymphoma.

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Department of Health Sciences Research, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN, USA.


We evaluated the association of dietary fat and protein intake with risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) in a clinic-based study in 603 cases (including 218 chronic lymphocytic leukemia/small lymphocytic lymphoma, 146 follicular lymphoma, and 105 diffuse large B-cell lymphoma) and 1007 frequency-matched controls. Usual diet was assessed with a 128-item food-frequency questionnaire. Unconditional logistic regression was used to estimate ORs and 95% CIs, and polytomous logistic regression was used to assess subtype-specific risks. trans Fatty acid (TFA) intake was positively associated with NHL risk [OR = 1.60 for highest vs. lowest quartile (95% CI = 1.18, 2.15); P-trend = 0.0014], n3 (ω3) fatty acid intake was inversely associated with risk [OR = 0.48 (95% CI = 0.35, 0.65); P-trend < 0.0001], and there was no association with total, animal, plant-based, or saturated fat intake. When examining intake of specific foods, processed meat [OR = 1.37 (95% CI = 1.02, 1.83); P-trend = 0.03], milk containing any fat [OR = 1.47 (95% CI = 1.16, 1.88); P-trend = 0.0025], and high-fat ice cream [OR = 4.03 (95% CI = 2.80, 5.80); P-trend < 0.0001], intakes were positively associated with risk, whereas intakes of fresh fish and total seafood [OR = 0.61 (95% CI = 0.46, 0.80); P-trend = 0.0025] were inversely associated with risk. Overall, there was little evidence for NHL subtype-specific heterogeneity. In conclusion, diets high in TFAs, processed meats, and higher fat dairy products were positively associated with NHL risk, whereas diets high in n3 fatty acids and total seafood were inversely associated with risk.

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