Dietary Pattern and Risk of Multiple Myeloma in Two Large Prospective US Cohort Studies

JNCI Cancer Spectr. 2019 Jun;3(2):pkz025. doi: 10.1093/jncics/pkz025. Epub 2019 Apr 27.


Background: The limited data on specific dietary components and risk of multiple myeloma (MM) show no consistent association. Studies have not examined the association of dietary pattern with MM risk.

Methods: In prospective cohorts of 69 751 women (Nurses' Health Study, 1984-2014) and 47 232 men (Health Professionals Follow-up Study, 1986-2014), we examined the association between dietary pattern and risk of MM using Cox proportional hazard models. Diet was assessed repeatedly every 4 years with food frequency questionnaires and was used to calculate dietary patterns including the Alternate Healthy Eating Index-2010, Alternate Mediterranean Diet, Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension, Prudent and Western patterns, the empirical dietary inflammatory pattern (EDIP), and empirical dietary indices for insulin resistance (EDIR) and hyperinsulinemia (EDIH).

Results: During 2 792 257 person-years of follow-up, we identified 478 incident MM cases (215 women, 263 men). In men, high EDIP was statistically significantly associated with a 16% increase in MM risk (hazard ratio [HR] = 1.16, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.02 to 1.32 per 1-SD increase). Moreover, EDIR and EDIH had a suggestive positive association (EDIR: HR = 1.09, 95% CI = 0.96 to 1.24; and EDIH: HR = 1.11, 95% CI = 0.97 to 1.28 per 1-SD increase). We observed no other associations with MM risk in men and no associations for any dietary pattern with MM risk in women.

Conclusions: We present the first evidence for a role of diets with higher inflammatory or insulinemic potential in MM development. Further studies are warranted to explore these associations in other populations, including the apparent restriction to men.