Food groups and risk of prostate cancer in Italy

Cristina Bosetti, Stefania Micelotta, Luigino Dal Maso, Renato Talamini, Maurizio Montella, Eva Negri, Ettore Conti, Silvia Franceschi, Carlo La Vecchia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Although several studies have been conducted, the relation between diet and prostate cancer remains unclear. The role of a wide range of foods on the risk of prostate cancer has thus been analyzed in a case-control study conducted in Italy between 1991 and 2002. Cases were 1,294 patients below age 15 years with incident, histologically confirmed carcinoma of the prostate; controls were 1,451 subjects below age 75 years admitted to the same hospitals as cases for a wide spectrum of acute, non-neoplastic conditions. Multivariate odds ratios (ORs) were obtained after allowance for major potential confounding factors, including calorie intake. Among the 19 food groups considered, 4 showed some significant association with prostate cancer risk. A significant trend of increasing risk with more frequent consumption was found for milk and dairy products (OR = 1.2 for highest vs. lowest quintile, p = 0.03) as well as bread (OR = 1.4, p = 0.01), whereas inverse associations were observed for soups (OR = 0.8, p = 0.02) and cooked vegetables (OR = 0.7, p = 0.01). This uniquely large study on prostate cancer and diet in a southern European population confirms that no strong association exists between any specific foods and prostate cancer, apart from an increased risk for milk and dairy products and a possible protective effect of vegetables.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)424-428
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Cancer
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 20 2004


  • Case-control study
  • Diet
  • Prostate cancer
  • Risk factor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology


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