Calcium, vitamin D, sunshine exposure, dairy products and colon cancer risk (United States).Cancer Causes Control 2000; 11(5):459-66CC
Epidemiologic studies on calcium, vitamin D and colon cancer are inconsistent, whereas experimental studies more regularly show a protective effect. To evaluate potential sources of inconsistencies, data from a large case-control study were analyzed, stratifying on potential effect modifiers.
Data were collected by certified interviewers in Northern California, Utah and Minnesota. Analyses included 1993 incident colon cancer cases and 2410 population-based controls. Multivariate logistic regression models included age, sex, BMI, family history, physical activity, intake of energy, dietary fiber, aspirin and NSAIDs.
Dietary calcium was inversely associated with colon cancer risk in men (OR highest vs lowest quintile = 0.6, 95% CI = 0.5-0.9) and women (OR = 0.6, 95% CI = 0.4-0.9). No statistically significant associations were observed for dietary vitamin D or sunshine exposure. Consumption of total low-fat dairy products was associated with a statistically significantly decreased risk in men and women (ORs highest vs lowest category of intake = 0.8 and 0.7 respectively). Calcium supplement use was inversely associated with risk in both sexes (ORs use vs non-use = 0.8). Vitamin D supplements were inversely associated with risk in men (OR = 0.5) and women (OR = 0.6) but confidence limits included 1.0.
These data provide additional support of an inverse association between high levels of calcium intake and colon cancer risk.