Environment and Breast Cancer: Science Review

Evidence From Humans
Print this page
Meta-analysis of studies on breast cancer risk and diet: the role of fruit and vegetable consumption and the intake of associated micronutrients
Gandini, S., Merzenich, H., Robertson, C., Boyle, P. Eur J Cancer. 2000. 36:5, 636-46.
Study design
Other: Meta-analysis of cohort studies
Funding agency
Other: Italian Association for Cancer Research
Study Participants
Menopausal Status
The menopausal status of women included in this study is listed here.
Post menopausal and premenopausal combined
Number in Cohort
Cohort 208,904
Participant selection: Inclusion and exclusion criteria
Criteria used to select participants in the study.
In: The studies had to provide sufficient information to estimate the relative risk (RR) and 95% confidence intervals, the studies had to be independent, consumption of food, categories for which results are reported had to be comparable, questionnaire to assess diet had to be equivalent (based on food frequency questionnaire), the population studied should be homogeneous at least for the main risk factors for breast cancer. Ex: Studies with cut-off points for the highest frequencies were close to the lowest categories of intake of all other studies and studies with risk estimates for premenopausal only.
Comment about participation selection
Heterogeneity of methodology
How exposure was measured
Questionnaire, FFQ
Statistical Analysis
Ethnic groups with separate analysis
If this study provided a separate analysis by ethnic or racial group, the groups are listed here.
Confounders considered
Other breast cancer risk factors, such as family history, age at first birth, and hormone replacement therapy use, that were taken into account in the study.
Not reported
Genetic characterization included
If the study analyzed relationships between environmental factors and inherited genetic variations, this field will be marked “Yes.” “No”, if not.
Description of major analysis
Summary RR with 95% CI extracted from the RR that controlled for confounders the best. RR of high consumption compared with low consumption (greater than one portion per day versus less than three to four portions per week)
Results Comments
A protective effect for high vegetable intake was detected in each of the cohort studies, but this effect was not statistically significant.
Author address
Division of Epidemiology and Biostatics, European Institute of Oncology, Via Ripamonti 435, 20141, Milan, Italy. sara.gandini@ieo.it