In the recent World Cancer Research Fund/American Institute for Cancer Research report of diet and cancer, it was concluded that there is limited but suggestive evidence that animal fat intake increases the risk of colorectal cancer.
Dr Dominik Alexander and colleagues from the USA clarified this potential relation by conducting a meta-analyses across a variety of subgroups, incorporating data from additional studies.
Analyses of high compared with low animal fat intakes and categorical dose-response evaluations were conducted.
Subgroup analyses, consisting of evaluations by study design, sex, and tumor site were also performed.
|The summary relative risk estimate was 1.1 for high vs low intakes of protein|
|American Journal of Clinical Nutrition|
The researchers identified 6 prospective cohort studies with comprehensive dietary assessments, contributing 1070 cases of colorectal cancer and 1.5 million person-years of follow-up.
The summary relative risk estimate for these studies was 1.1 on the basis of high compared with low intakes.
When data from case-control studies were combined with the cohort data, the resulting summary relative risk estimate was 1.2 with increased variability.
In addition, the team conducted a dose-response analysis of the cohort studies.
The research team found no association between a 20-g/d increment in animal fat intake and colorectal cancer was observed.
In a separate analysis of 3 prospective cohort studies that reported data for animal protein or meat protein, no significant association with colorectal cancer was observed.
Dr Alexander's team concluded, “On the basis of the results of this quantitative assessment, the available epidemiologic evidence does not appear to support an independent association between animal fat intake or animal protein intake and colorectal cancer.”