Trends in diet and breast cancer mortality in England and Wales 1928-1977.
Trends in age-adjusted breast cancer mortality and consumption of meat, fat, sugar, cereal, and fruit and vegetables were studied for England and Wales over the 50-year period from 1928 to 1977. At the onset of World War II, there was a marked reduction in both breast cancer mortality and intake of sugar, meat and fat, and an increased consumption of cereals and vegetables. Consumption of these foodstuffs returned to pre-war levels by 1954, but breast cancer mortality did not return to pre-war levels until some 15 years later. The association between the various dietary components and subsequent breast cancer mortality was determined for various lag intervals. Significant correlations were found for cereal, fat, sugar and meat consumption, the correlation being maximal for a diet-breast cancer death lag interval of 12 years. These findings add weight to the hypothesis that breast cancer development is related to a diet rich in meat, fat and sugar, and that some protection against cancer may be afforded by a reduction in these dietary components and an increase in cereal consumption.
Pub Type(s)Journal Article