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: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00340015.
Keywords: CVD; fiber; mortality; ready-to-eat cereals.