High Dietary Intake of Vegetable or Polyunsaturated Fats Is Associated With Reduced Risk of Hepatocellular Carcinoma

Wanshui Yang, Jing Sui, Yanan Ma, Tracey G. Simon, Jessica L. Petrick, Michelle Lai, Katherine A. McGlynn, Peter T. Campbell, Edward L. Giovannucci, Andrew T. Chan, Xuehong Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background & Aims: We investigated associations of intake of total fats, specific dietary fats, and fats from different food sources with risk of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) using data from the Nurses’ Health Study (NHS) and the Health Professionals Follow-up Study (HPFS). Methods: We analyzed data from a total of 138,483 women and men who participated in the NHS or HPFS. A validated semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire was sent to NHS participants in 1980, 1984, 1986, and every 4 years thereafter; dietary information was collected from participants in the HPFS in 1986 and every 4 years thereafter. Multivariable hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% CIs were estimated using Cox proportional hazards regression. Results: After an average follow-up time of 26.6 years, 160 incident HCC cases were documented. Although there was a non-significant association between total fat intake and HCC, intake of vegetable fats reduced risk of HCC (HR for the highest vs lowest quartile, 0.61; 95% CI, 0.39–0.96; Ptrend =.02), but not animal or dairy fats. Replacing animal or dairy fats with an equivalent amount of vegetable fats was associated with a lower risk of HCC (HR per 1 standard deviation, 0.79; 95% CI, 0.65–0.97). Among fat subtypes, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids, including n-3 (HR, 0.63; 95% CI, 0.41–0.96; Ptrend =.14) and n-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids (HR, 0.54; 95% CI, 0.34–0.86; Ptrend =.02), were inversely associated with risk of HCC. Higher ratios of monounsaturated or polyunsaturated fat to saturated fat were inversely associated with HCC risk (all Ptrend ≤.02). In addition, when replacing saturated fats with monounsaturated or polyunsaturated fats, the HR per 1 standard deviation was 0.77 (95% CI, 0.64–0.92). Conclusions: In an analysis of data from 2 large cohort studies, we found higher intake of vegetable fats and polyunsaturated fats to be associated with lower risk of HCC. Replacing animal or dairy fats with vegetable fats, or replacing saturated fats with monounsaturated or polyunsaturated fats, was associated with reduced risk of HCC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2775-2783.e11
JournalClinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology
Volume18
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2020
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Animal Fat
  • Dairy Fat
  • Liver Cancer
  • Primary Prevention
  • PUFAs
  • Vegetable Fat

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology

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