Low-Fat Dietary Pattern and Cancer Mortality in the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) Randomized Controlled Trial

Rowan T. Chlebowski, Garnet L. Anderson, Jo Ann E. Manson, Ross L. Prentice, Aaron K. Aragaki, Linda Snetselaar, Shirley A.A. Beresford, Lewis H. Kuller, Karen Johnson, Dorothy Lane, Juhua Luo, Thomas E. Rohan, Li Jiao, Ana Barac, Catherine Womack, Mace Coday, Mridul Datta, Cynthia A. Thomson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: In the Women’s Health Initiative Dietary Modification trial, a low-fat dietary pattern reduced deaths after breast cancer. Mortality from other cancer sites has not been reported. Methods: A low-fat dietary pattern influence on deaths from and after site-specific cancers was examined during 8.5 years (median) of dietary intervention and cumulatively during 17.7 years (median) of follow-up. A total 48 835 postmenopausal women, ages 50–79 years, were randomly assigned from 1993 to 1998 at 40 US clinical centers to dietary intervention (40%, n = 19 541 or a usual diet comparison group (60%, n = 29 294). Dietary intervention influence on mortality from protocol-specified cancers (breast, colon and rectum, endometrium and ovary), individually and as a composite, represented the primary analyses. Results: During the dietary intervention period, a reduction in deaths after breast cancer (HR = 0.65 95% CI = 0.45 to 0.94, P = .02) was the only statistically significant cancer mortality finding. During intervention, the HRs for deaths after the protocol-specified cancer composite were 0.90 (95% CI = 0.73 to 1.10) and 0.95 (95% CI = 0.85 to 1.06) for deaths after all cancers. During 17.7 years of follow-up with 3867 deaths after all cancers, reduction in deaths after breast cancer continued in the dietary intervention group (HR = 0.85, 95% CI = 0.74 to 0.99, P = .03). However, no dietary intervention influence on deaths from or after any other cancer or cancer composite was seen. Conclusions: A low-fat dietary pattern reduced deaths after breast cancer. No reduction in mortality from or after any other cancer or cancer composite was seen.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberpky065
JournalJNCI Cancer Spectrum
Volume2
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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