Dietary factors and risk of chronic lymphocytic leukemia and small lymphocytic lymphoma: a pooled analysis of two prospective studies

Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2010 Oct;19(10):2680-4. doi: 10.1158/1055-9965.EPI-10-0585.


Background: Other than male sex, family history, advanced age, and race, risk factors for chronic lymphocytic leukemia and small lymphocytic lymphoma (CLL/SLL) are unknown. Very few studies have investigated diet in relation to these leukemias, and no consistent associations are known.

Methods: Using two large prospective population-based studies, we evaluated the relationship between diet and CLL/SLL risk. Among 525,982 men and women free of cancer at enrollment, we identified 1,129 incident CLL/SLL cases during 11.2 years of follow-up.

Results: We found no associations between total fat, saturated fat, fiber, red meat, processed meat, fruit, or vegetable intake and risk of CLL/SLL. We noted a suggestive positive association between body mass index and CLL/SLL (hazard ratio, 1.30; 95% confidence interval, 0.99-1.36).

Conclusion: We did not find any associations between food or nutrient intake and CLL/SLL.

Impact: Our large prospective study indicates that diet may not play a role in CLL/SLL development.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Intramural

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cohort Studies
  • Diet*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Leukemia, Lymphocytic, Chronic, B-Cell / epidemiology*
  • Leukemia, Lymphocytic, Chronic, B-Cell / pathology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • United States / epidemiology