Current evidence from randomised controlled trials on the effects of dietary fibre intake on breast cancer risk is inconsistent. We conducted a meta-analysis to determine the effectiveness of dietary fibre intake in reducing breast cancer risk. We searched for prospective and case-control studies on dietary fibre intake and breast cancer risk in the English language through March 2016. Twenty-four epidemiologic studies obtained through the PubMed, Embase, Web of Science, and Cochrane Library databases were systematically reviewed. A random-effects model was used to compute the pooled risk estimates by extracting the risk estimate of the highest and lowest reported categories of intake from each study. The meta-analyses showed a 12% decrease in breast cancer risk with dietary fibre intake. The association between dietary fibre intake and breast cancer risk was significant when stratified according to Jadad scores, study types, and menopause status. Dose-response analysis showed that every 10 g/d increment in dietary fibre intake was associated with a 4% reduction in breast cancer risk, and little evidence of publication bias was found. Thus, dietary fibre consumption is significantly associated with a reduced risk of breast cancer, particularly in postmenopausal women.
Keywords: breast cancer; dietary fibre; epidemiology; meta-analysis.