Ready-to-Eat Cereal Consumption with Total and Cause-Specific Mortality: Prospective Analysis of 367,442 Individuals

J Am Coll Nutr. 2016;35(3):217-23. doi: 10.1080/07315724.2014.971193. Epub 2015 Nov 23.


Background: Intakes of ready-to-eat cereal (RTEC) have been inversely associated with risk factors of chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease (CVD), type 2 diabetes, and certain cancers; however, their relations with total and cause-specific mortality remain unclear.

Objective: To prospectively assess the associations of RTEC intakes with all causes and disease-specific mortality risk.

Design: The study included 367,442 participants from the prospective National Institutes of Health (NIH)-AARP Diet and Health Study. Intakes of RTEC were assessed at baseline.

Results: Over an average of 14 years of follow-up, 46,067 deaths were documented. Consumption of RTEC was significantly associated with reduced risk of mortality from all-cause mortality and death from CVD, diabetes, all cancer, and digestive cancer (all p for trend < 0.05). In multivariate models, compared to nonconsumers of RTEC, those in the highest intake of RTEC had a 15% lower risk of all-cause mortality and 10%-30% lower risk of disease-specific mortality. Within RTEC consumers, total fiber intakes were associated with reduced risk of mortality from all-cause mortality and deaths from CVD, all cancer, digestive cancer, and respiratory disease (all p for trend < 0.005).

Conclusions: Consumption of RTEC was associated with reduced risk of all-cause mortality and mortality from specific diseases such as CVD, diabetes, and cancer. This association may be mediated via greater fiber intake.

Trial registration: NCT00340015.

Keywords: CVD; fiber; mortality; ready-to-eat cereals.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / epidemiology
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / mortality*
  • Diabetes Mellitus / epidemiology
  • Diabetes Mellitus / mortality*
  • Diet Surveys*
  • Edible Grain*
  • Fast Foods*
  • Feeding Behavior
  • Female
  • Gastrointestinal Neoplasms / epidemiology
  • Gastrointestinal Neoplasms / mortality
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms / epidemiology
  • Neoplasms / mortality*
  • Prospective Studies
  • United States / epidemiology

Associated data