Association between Polyphenol Intake and Breast Cancer Risk by Menopausal and Hormone Receptor Status

Nutrients. 2020 Apr 3;12(4):994. doi: 10.3390/nu12040994.


There is limited evidence of phenolic compounds acting as protective agents on several cancer types, including breast cancer (BC). Nevertheless, some polyphenol classes have not been investigated and there is a lack of studies assessing the effect on menopausal status and hormone receptor status as influenced by these compounds. The objective of this study is to evaluate the association between the intake of all polyphenol classes in relation to the BC risk by menopausal and hormone receptor status. We used data from a population-based multi-case-control study (MCC-Spain) including 1472 BC cases and 1577 controls from 12 different regions of Spain. The odds ratios (ORs) with 95% CI were calculated using logistic regression of mixed effects by quartiles and log2 of polyphenol intakes (adjusted for the residual method) of overall BC, menopausal and receptor status. No associations were found between total intake of polyphenols and BC risk. However, inverse associations were found between stilbenes and all BC risk (ORQ4 vs. Q1: 0.70, 95%CI: 0.56-0.89, Ptrend = 0.001), the consumption of hydroxybenzaldehydes (ORQ4 vs. Q1: 0.75, 95%CI: 0.59-0.93, Ptrend = 0.012) and hydroxycoumarins (ORQ4 vs. Q1: 0.73, 95%CI: 0.57-0.93; Ptrend = 0.005) were also inversely associated. The intake of stilbenes, hydroxybenzaldehydes and hydroxycoumarins can contribute to BC reduction risk on all menopausal and receptor statuses.

Keywords: breast cancer; case-control; classes; flavonoids; intake; polyphenols.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Breast Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Breast Neoplasms / prevention & control*
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Menopause*
  • Middle Aged
  • Odds Ratio
  • Polyphenols / administration & dosage*
  • Receptors, Estrogen / genetics
  • Receptors, Estrogen / metabolism*
  • Receptors, Progesterone / genetics
  • Receptors, Progesterone / metabolism*
  • Risk Factors
  • Young Adult


  • Polyphenols
  • Receptors, Estrogen
  • Receptors, Progesterone