Healthy diets tied to modest reduction in breast cancer risk

  • Hou R & al.
  • Cancer Causes Control
  • 5 Jun 2019

  • curated by Miriam Davis, PhD
  • Univadis Clinical Summaries
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Takeaway

  • A meta-analysis finds that healthy diets are associated with 7% lower risk of breast cancer and 24% lower risk of all-cause mortality in patients with breast cancer.
  • No association is seen between healthy diets and lower risk of breast cancer-specific mortality.

Why this matters

  • Results suggest that clinicians should promote healthy diet for breast cancer prevention and, if breast cancer is present, for all-cause survival.

Study design

  • Meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies (n=32) probing the association between breast cancer risk (n=27) and mortality in patients with breast cancer (n=5).
  • Healthy diets were classified by author's description.
  • Funding: None disclosed.

Key results

  • Healthy diets were associated with slightly lower risk of breast cancer onset (risk ratio [RR], 0.93; 95% CI, 0.88-0.98).
    • Subgroup analysis found breast cancer risk reduction with a posteriori-derived healthy patterns (RR, 0.90; 95% CI, 0.85-0.95) but not a priori diet, study region, menopausal status, or breast cancer subtypes.
  • Healthy diets were associated with lower risk of all-cause mortality in patients with breast cancer (RR, 0.76; 95% CI, 0.63-0.92), but not in their breast cancer-specific mortality (RR, 0.91; 95% CI, 0.65-1.28).

Limitations

  • Heterogeneity across studies, especially in definition of healthy diet.

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