Meat Consumption and Risk of Lung Cancer Among Never-Smoking Women Academic Article uri icon


  • The relationship between diet and lung cancer, apart from the protective effect of fruit and vegetables, is poorly understood. Reports on the role of dietary components such as meat are inconsistent, and few studies include sufficient numbers of nonsmokers. We examined the relationship between meat consumption and never-smoking lung cancer in a hospital-based case-control study of Singapore Chinese women, a population with low smoking prevalence. Three hundred and ninety-nine cases and 815 controls were recruited, of whom 258 cases and 712 controls were never smokers. A standardized questionnaire (which included a food frequency questionnaire module) was administered by trained interviewers. Among these never smokers, fruit and vegetable intake were inversely associated with lung cancer risk. Seventy-two percent of meat consumed was white meat (chicken or fish). Meat consumption overall was inversely associated with lung cancer [adjusted odds ratio (OR), 0.88, 0.59 for second, third tertiles, P (trend) = .012]. An inverse relationship between fish consumption and lung cancer (adjusted OR, 0.81, 0.47 for 2nd, 3rd tertiles, P (trend) < .001) was observed. No association was seen between consumption of processed meats and lung cancer, nor between dietary heterocyclic amines and lung cancer. Our data suggest that fish consumption may be protective against lung cancer in never smokers.


  • Lim, Wei-Yen
  • Chuah, Khoon Leong
  • Eng, Philip
  • Leong, Swan Swan
  • Lim, Elaine
  • Lim, Tow Keang
  • Ng, Alan
  • Poh, Wee Teng
  • Tee, Augustine
  • Teh, Ming
  • Salim, Agus
  • Seow, Adeline

publication date

  • August 2011