Consumption of sweet foods and breast cancer risk: a case-control study of women on Long Island, New York.

Patrick T. Bradshaw, Sharon K. Sagiv, Geoffrey C. Kabat, Jessie A. Satia, Julie A. Britton, Susan L. Teitelbaum, Alfred I. Neugut, Marilie D. Gammon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


Several epidemiologic studies have reported a positive association between breast cancer risk and high intake of sweets, which may be due to an insulin-related mechanism. We investigated this association in a population-based case-control study of 1,434 cases and 1,440 controls from Long Island, NY. Shortly after diagnosis, subjects were interviewed in-person to assess potential breast cancer risk factors, and self-completed a modified Block food frequency questionnaire, which included 11 items pertaining to consumption of sweets (sweet beverages, added sugars, and various desserts) in the previous year. Using unconditional logistic regression models, we estimated the association between consumption of sweets and breast cancer. Consumption of a food grouping that included dessert foods, sweet beverages, and added sugars was positively associated with breast cancer risk [adjusted odds ratio (OR) comparing the highest to the lowest quartile: 1.27, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.00-1.61]. The OR was slightly higher when only dessert foods were considered (OR: 1.55, 95% CI: 1.23-1.96). The association with desserts was stronger among pre-menopausal women (OR: 2.00, 95% CI: 1.32-3.04) than post-menopausal women (OR: 1.40, 95% CI: 1.07-1.83), although the interaction with menopause was not statistically significant. Our study indicates that frequent consumption of sweets, particularly desserts, may be associated with an increased risk of breast cancer. These results are consistent with other studies that implicate insulin-related factors in breast carcinogenesis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1509-1515
Number of pages7
JournalCancer Causes and Control
Issue number8
StatePublished - Oct 2009


Dive into the research topics of 'Consumption of sweet foods and breast cancer risk: a case-control study of women on Long Island, New York.'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this