Food groups and laryngeal cancer risk: a case-control study from Italy and Switzerland

Int J Cancer. 2002 Jul 20;100(3):355-60. doi: 10.1002/ijc.10485.


Besides tobacco and alcohol, diet has been thought to be associated with laryngeal cancer risk. We thus analyzed the role of various food groups, as well as specific seasoning fats, in a case-control study conducted in Northern Italy and the Swiss Canton of Vaud from 1992 to 2000. Our study included 527 incident, histologically confirmed cases and 1,297 frequency-matched controls, selected among patients admitted to the same hospitals as cases for acute, nonneoplastic conditions, unrelated to smoking, alcohol consumption and long-term modifications of diet. The subjects' usual diet was investigated through a validated food frequency questionnaire, including 78 foods and beverages. Odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were estimated using unconditional multiple logistic regression models. After adjustment for major confounding factors, a significant trend of increasing risk was observed for eggs (OR = 1.7 for the highest compared to the lowest quintile), red meat (OR = 3.1), processed meat (OR = 1.7), fish (OR = 1.6) and sugars (OR = 1.6). Significant inverse associations were observed for pulses (OR = 0.7), raw vegetables (OR = 0.2), cooked vegetables (OR = 0.3), citrus fruit (OR = 0.6) and other fruit (OR = 0.5). In regard to seasoning fats, a significant reduction of cancer risk was observed for olive oil (OR = 0.4) and specific seed oils (OR = 0.6), while mixed seed oils were directly associated with laryngeal cancer risk (OR = 2.2). Our study suggests that increasing vegetables and fruit, decreasing meat consumption and perhaps substituting olive oil or specific seed oils for other types of seasoning lipids might help reduce laryngeal cancer risk.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Feeding Behavior*
  • Female
  • Fruit
  • Humans
  • Italy
  • Laryngeal Neoplasms / etiology*
  • Laryngeal Neoplasms / prevention & control
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Olive Oil
  • Plant Oils / administration & dosage
  • Risk
  • Switzerland
  • Vegetables


  • Olive Oil
  • Plant Oils