The role of diet in the etiology of prostate cancer remains unclear, because results from several case-control and cohort studies on fat intake and risk of prostate cancer have been inconsistent; few of the studies have adjusted the results for caloric intake. To examine the relationship between energy, intake of several nutrients and risk of prostate cancer (all stages combined and advanced stages separately), we conducted a population-based case-control study in Orebro County, Sweden, from 1989 through 1994. A total of 526 patients with newly diagnosed prostate cancer and 536 controls, randomly selected from the population register and frequency-matched by age, were included in the analyses. Information about dietary intake was obtained from a self-administered semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire. Odds ratios with 95% confidence intervals were estimated by unconditional logistic regression. In age-adjusted analyses, there were positive associations of prostate cancer (all stages combined) risk with total energy intake as well as intake of total fat (saturated and monounsaturated), protein, retinol and zinc. The positive association with energy intake was stronger for advanced cancer, with an excess risk of 70% for the highest quartile vs. the lowest. After adjustment for energy intake, there was no apparent association of prostate cancers (all stages combined) with any of the investigated nutrients. However, a weak positive association between intake of retinol and advanced cancer was observed. We conclude that our results provide some evidence that total energy intake is a risk factor for prostate cancer.