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Inflammation is a central mechanism in metabolic disorders associated with morbidity and mortality and dietary factors can modulate inflammation. We aimed to prospectively investigate the association between an empirically developed, food-based dietary inflammatory pattern (EDIP) score and the risk of overall and cause-specific mortality, using data from the US National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey from 1999 to 2014. EDIP score was derived by entering thirty-nine predefined commonly consumed food groups into the reduced rank regression models followed by stepwise linear regression, which was most predictive of two plasma inflammation biomarkers including C-reactive protein and leucocyte count among 25 500 US adults. This score was further validated in a testing set of 9466 adults. Deaths from baseline until 31 December 2015 were identified through record linkage to the National Death Index. During a median follow-up of 7·8 years among 40 074 participants, we documented 4904 deaths. Compared with participants in the lowest quintile of EDIP score, those in the highest quintile had a higher risk of overall death (hazard ratio (HR) = 1·19, 95 % CI 1·08, 1·32, Ptrend = 0·002), and deaths from cancer (HR = 1·41, 95 % CI 1·14, 1·74, Ptrend = 0·017) and CVD (HR = 1·22, 95 % CI 0·98, 1·53, Ptrend = 0·211). When stratified by age, the association of EDIP with overall mortality was stronger among individuals under 65 years of age (Pinteraction = 0·001). Diets with a higher inflammatory potential were associated with increased risk of overall and cancer-specific mortality. Interventions to reduce the adverse effect of pro-inflammatory diets may potentially promote health and longevity.
Primary liver cancer is the third leading cause of cancer-related death worldwide. Most patients are diagnosed at late stages with poor prognosis; thus, identification of modifiable risk factors for primary prevention of liver cancer is urgently needed. The well-established risk factors of liver cancer include chronic infection with hepatitis B virus (HBV) or hepatitis C virus (HCV), heavy alcohol consumption, metabolic diseases such as obesity and diabetes, and aflatoxin exposure. However, a large proportion of cancer cases worldwide cannot be explained by current known risk factors. Dietary factors have been suspected as important, but dietary aetiology of liver cancer remains poorly understood. In this review, we summarised and evaluated the observational studies of diet including single nutrients, food and food groups, as well as dietary patterns with the risk of developing liver cancer. Although there are large knowledge gaps between diet and liver cancer risk, current epidemiological evidence supports an important role of diet in liver cancer development. For example, exposure to aflatoxin, heavy alcohol drinking and possibly dairy product (not including yogurt) intake increase, while intake of coffee, fish and tea, light-to-moderate alcohol drinking and several healthy dietary patterns (e.g. Alternative Healthy Eating Index) may decrease liver cancer risk. Future studies with large sample size and accurate diet measurement are warranted and need to consider issues such as the possible aetiological heterogeneity between liver cancer subtypes, the influence of chronic HBV or HCV infection, the high-risk populations (e.g. cirrhosis) and a potential interplay with host gut microbiota or genetic variations.
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