Diet as risk for lung cancer: a Swedish case-control study

Nutr Cancer. 2002;44(2):145-51. doi: 10.1207/S15327914NC4402_04.


A case-control study was undertaken to study lung cancer in relation to dietary habits, occupational exposure, and living in urban or country areas. Suspect lung cancer cases in West Sweden and population controls were interviewed using a food frequency questionnaire. The study comprised 177 female and 359 male cases and 916 controls. The cases mainly comprised former and current smokers (82% female, 95% male). For the analysis, cases were divided into the histological diagnoses adenocarcinoma and squamous cell, small cell, and adenosquamous cell carcinomas, as well as into smoking categories. A high frequency of consumption of vegetables was significantly related to a lower risk for adenocarcinoma and squamous cell and adenosquamous cell carcinoma among men and adenocarcinoma among women. A low odds ratio in the highest quartile of vegetable consumption in men was seen in all smoking categories. There were no significant protective effects from fruit in the different lung cancer subgroups, although a significant trend was found for heavy-smoking females. A high consumption of milk was related to an increased risk for lung cancer, especially adenosquamous cell carcinoma. The results suggest that the protective effect or risk due to dietary factors may affect different forms of lung cancer. The results from this as well as previous studies suggest a complex interaction between diet and lung cancer risk, involving the types of lung cancer as well as consumption patterns in the population.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Carcinoma, Small Cell / etiology*
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Diet / adverse effects*
  • Feeding Behavior / physiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Lung Neoplasms / etiology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms, Glandular and Epithelial / etiology*
  • Odds Ratio
  • Risk Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Sweden