Associations of Novel Lifestyle- and Whole Foods-Based Inflammation Scores with Incident Colorectal Cancer Among Women

Yasheen Gao, Doratha A. Byrd, Anna Prizment, De Ann Lazovich, Roberd M. Bostick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: Chronic inflammation, associated with lifestyle and dietary factors, may contribute to colorectal carcinogenesis. To address this, we investigated associations of previously validated, inflammation biomarker panel-weighted, novel, 4-component lifestyle (LIS) and 19-component predominately whole foods-based dietary (DIS) inflammation scores with incident colorectal cancer (CRC) in the prospective Iowa Women's Health Study (IWHS; 1986-2012; n  = 34,254, of whom 1,632 developed CRC).

METHODS: We applied the published scores' components' weights, summed the weighted components to constitute the scores (higher scores reflect a higher balance of pro-inflammatory exposures), and investigated LIS- and DIS-CRC associations using multivariable Cox proportional hazards regression.

RESULTS: The multivariable-adjusted hazards ratios (HR) and their 95% confidence intervals (CI) for CRC among participants in the highest relative to the lowest LIS and DIS quintiles were 1.47 (1.26, 1.72; P trend  < 0.01) and 1.07 (0.91, 1.25; P trend  = 0.22), respectively. The corresponding findings for distal colon cancers were HR 1.78 (1.29, 2.47) and HR 1.34 (0.98, 1.84), respectively. Among those in the highest relative to the lowest joint LIS/DIS quintile, the HR for CRC was 1.60 (95% CI 1.30, 1.98).

CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that a more pro-inflammatory lifestyle, alone and jointly with a more pro-inflammatory diet, may be associated with higher CRC risk.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1356-1369
Number of pages14
JournalNutrition and Cancer
Issue number4
Early online dateJul 23 2021
StatePublished - 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the US National Cancer Institute at the National Institutes of Health under Grant R01 CA039742 (support to DeAnn Lazovich), and the Anne and Wilson P. Franklin Foundation (support to Roberd M. Bostick).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't


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