NIH Research Festival
Background: Nut consumption has been associated with decreased risk of colorectal and pancreatic cancer. Polyphenols, fiber, vitamins, and minerals in nuts may confer this observed protective effect. However, the effect of nut consumption on gastroesophageal cancers is not clear. The objective was to evaluate the associations between nut and peanut butter consumption and the risk of esophageal and gastric cancers and their different subtypes. Design: This study was conducted using data from the NIH-AARP Diet and Health Study, which enrolled 566,407 persons, 50 to 71 years old at baseline (1995-1996). The median follow-up time was 15.5 years. Intake of nuts and peanut butter were assessed using a validated food frequency questionnaire. Cox proportional hazard models were used to estimate hazard ratios (HR) and 95% confidence intervals for esophageal and gastric cancers and their subtypes. Results: We identified 966 incident cases of esophageal adenocarcinomas, 323 cases of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma, 698 cases of gastric cardia adenocarcinoma, and 732 cases of gastric non-cardia adenocarcinoma. Compared to non-consumers of nuts or peanut butter, participants in the highest category of nut consumption (C3) had a lower risk of developing gastric non-cardia adenocarcinoma (C3 vs. C0 HR=0.73, 95% CI=0.57, 0.94). This inverse association was also seen for peanut butter consumption (C3 vs. C0 HR=0.75, 95% CI=0.60, 0.94). We observed no significant associations between intake of nuts or peanut butter and risk of other subtypes. Conclusions: Both nut and peanut butter consumption were inversely associated with the risk of gastric non-cardia adenocarcinoma.
Scientific Focus Area: Epidemiology
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