Patterns of meat intake and risk of prostate cancer among African-Americans in a large prospective study

Cancer Causes Control. 2011 Dec;22(12):1691-8. doi: 10.1007/s10552-011-9845-1. Epub 2011 Oct 5.


Objective: Given the large racial differences in prostate cancer risk, further investigation of diet and prostate cancer is warranted among high-risk groups. The purpose of this study was to examine the association between type of meat intake and prostate cancer risk among African-American men.

Methods: In the large, prospective NIH-AARP Diet and Health Study, we analyzed baseline (1995-1996) data from African-American participants, aged 50-71 years. Incident prostate cancer cases (n = 1,089) were identified through 2006. Dietary and risk factor data were ascertained by questionnaires administered at baseline. Cox models were used to estimate hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) within intake quantiles.

Results: Neither white nor processed meat intake was associated with prostate cancer, regardless of meat-cooking method. Red meats cooked at high temperatures were associated with an increased risk of prostate cancer (HR = 1.18, 95% CI = 1.00-1.38 and HR = 1.22, 95% CI = 1.03-1.44, for the upper two intake tertiles). Intake of the heterocyclic amine (HCA), 2-amino-3,4,8-trimethylimidazo[4,5-f] quinoxaline (DiMeIQx) was positively associated with prostate cancer (HR = 1.30; 95% CI = 1.05-1.61, p = 0.02). No associations were observed for intake of other HCAs.

Conclusion: Red meats cooked at high temperatures were positively associated with prostate cancer risk among African-American men. Further studies are needed to replicate these findings.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • African Americans
  • Animals
  • Cooking / methods*
  • Diet / adverse effects*
  • Heterocyclic Compounds / adverse effects
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Meat / adverse effects*
  • Middle Aged
  • Mutagens / adverse effects
  • Prospective Studies
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / epidemiology*
  • Risk Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires


  • Heterocyclic Compounds
  • Mutagens