Fruit and vegetable consumption and incident breast cancer: a systematic review and meta-analysis of prospective studies

Abstract

Background: We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of prospective studies to clarify the relation of fruit and vegetable consumption with incident breast cancer.

Methods: We searched systematically PubMed and EMBASE databases up to November 2020 to include prospective studies that reported the association of fruit and vegetable consumption with incident breast cancer. The pooled relative risks (RRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were calculated for the highest versus the lowest category of total fruit and vegetable, total fruit and total vegetable consumption, as well as fruit juice and subgroups of vegetables in relation to breast cancer incidence, using a random-effect model.

Results: Total fruit and vegetable consumption was associated with lower overall (RR = 0.91, 95% CI = 0.87-0.95) and postmenopausal breast cancer risk (RR = 0.88, 95% CI = 0.79-0.99). Total fruit consumption was associated with lower overall (RR = 0.93, 95% CI = 0.88-0.99) and postmenopausal breast cancer risk (RR = 0.93, 95% CI = 0.87-0.99). Total fruit and vegetable intake were associated with 11% and 26% lower risk of oestrogen- and progesterone-receptor-positive (ER+/PR+) and -negative (ER-/PR-) breast cancer, respectively. Total vegetable consumption was associated with 27% lower risk of ER-/PR- breast cancer. Fruit juice consumption was associated with increased overall breast cancer risk (RR = 1.04, 95% CI = 1.01-1.07). We did not find significant associations for subgroups of vegetable intake and breast cancer risk.

Conclusions: These findings suggest that high total fruit and vegetable consumption are associated with reduced risk of overall, postmenopausal, ER+/PR+ and ER-/PR- breast cancer.