Carbohydrates and fibre from fruits, vegetables protects against Lung Cancer: Study
Cancer is projected to surpass infectious and other non-communicable chronic diseases as the leading cause of death in every country during the twenty-first century. Diet is one modifiable lifestyle factor that has garnered attention due to substantial and growing evidence of its ability to influence cancer risk. A recent study suggests that Dietary carbohydrates and fibre may potentially protect against lung cancer. However, refined carbohydrates and high glycemic index dietary carbohydrates are associated with an increased lung cancer risk. The research has been published in the journal LUNG CANCER on March 12, 2021.
Previous studies have reported that carbohydrate intake increases cancer risk depending on the amount and type consumed. However, inconsistent findings have been reported on the link between dietary carbohydrates and lung cancer. Therefore, researchers of the University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China, conducted a study to comprehensively evaluate the role of dietary carbohydrates on lung cancer risk.
It was a prospective study based on the PLCO trial, which recruited 113,096 eligible participants across the United States. Participants who have completed the completed baseline and diet history questionnaires were included. The researchers used self-report and medical record follow-up to identify the incidence of lung cancer. They used a multivariable logistic model, adjusted for confounders to estimate the association of dietary carbohydrates, fibre, whole grains, glycemic index (GI) and glycemic load (GL) for lung cancer. They used similar methods in analyzing the carbohydrates and fibre from different food sources. They further used multinomial logistic models for sensitivity analysis with lung cancer subtypes as outcomes.
Key findings of the study were:
- Upon evaluation, they observed that dietary carbohydrates and GL were inversely associated with lung cancer incidence in the PLCO population.
- Among various carbohydrates, they found that 30-gram daily consumption of dietary fibre was related to a lower risk of lung cancer (fourth vs first quartile OR: 0.62) compared with 8.8-gram.
- They also found that consuming whole grains 2.3 servings per day as opposed to 0.3 servings per day was associated with a lower risk of lung cancer (OR: 0.73).
- They observed a higher risk of lung cancer, among those who consume high-GI food (OR: 1.19) and refined carbohydrates from soft drinks (OR: 1.23).
The authors concluded, "Carbohydrates and fibre from fruits, vegetables and whole grains are associated with lower lung cancer risk. Refined carbohydrates from processed food, such as soft drinks, appear to increase risk."
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