Coffee and tea consumption and risk of pre- and postmenopausal breast cancer in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) cohort study

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Introduction: Specific coffee subtypes and tea may impact risk of pre- and post-menopausal breast cancer differently. We investigated the association between coffee (total, caffeinated, decaffeinated) and tea intake and risk of breast cancer. Methods: A total of 335,060 women participating in the European Prospective Investigation into Nutrition and Cancer (EPIC) Study, completed a dietary questionnaire from 1992 to 2000, and were followed-up until 2010 for incidence of breast cancer. Hazard ratios (HR) of breast cancer by country-specific, as well as cohort-wide categories of beverage intake were estimated. Results: During an average follow-up of 11 years, 1064 premenopausal, and 9134 postmenopausal breast cancers were diagnosed. Caffeinated coffee intake was associated with lower risk of postmenopausal breast cancer: adjusted HR = 0.90, 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.82 to 0.98, for high versus low consumption; P-trend = 0.029. While there was no significant effect modification by hormone receptor status (P = 0.711), linear trend for lower risk of breast cancer with increasing caffeinated coffee intake was clearest for estrogen and progesterone receptor negative (ER-PR-), postmenopausal breast cancer (P = 0.008). For every 100 ml increase in caffeinated coffee intake, the risk of ER-PR- breast cancer was lower by 4% (adjusted HR: 0.96, 95% CI: 0.93 to 1.00). Non-consumers of decaffeinated coffee had lower risk of postmenopausal breast cancer (adjusted HR = 0.89; 95% CI: 0.80 to 0.99) compared to low consumers, without evidence of dose-response relationship (P-trend = 0.128). Exclusive decaffeinated coffee consumption was not related to postmenopausal breast cancer risk, compared to any decaffeinated-low caffeinated intake (adjusted HR = 0.97; 95% CI: 0.82 to 1.14), or to no intake of any coffee (HR: 0.96; 95%: 0.82 to 1.14). Caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee were not associated with premenopausal breast cancer. Tea intake was neither associated with pre- nor post-menopausal breast cancer. Conclusions: Higher caffeinated coffee intake may be associated with lower risk of postmenopausal breast cancer. Decaffeinated coffee intake does not seem to be associated with breast cancer.


  • Nirmala Bhoo-Pathy
  • Petra H. M. Peeters
  • Cuno S. P. M. Uiterwaal
  • H. Bas Bueno-de-Mesquita
  • Awang M. Bulgiba
  • Bodil Hammer Bech
  • Kim Overvad
  • Anne Tjonneland
  • Anja Olsen
  • Francoise Clavel-Chapelon
  • Guy Fagherazzi
  • Florence Perquier
  • Birgit Teucher
  • Rudolf Kaaks
  • Madlen Schuetze
  • Heiner Boeing
  • Pagona Lagiou
  • Philippos Orfanos
  • Antonia Trichopoulou
  • Claudia Agnoli
  • Amalia Mattiello
  • Domenico Palli
  • Rosario Tumino
  • Carlotta Sacerdote
  • Franzel J. B. van Duijnhoven
  • Tonje Braaten
  • Eiliv Lund
  • Guri Skeie
  • Maria-Luisa Redondo
  • Genevieve Buckland
  • Maria Jose Sanchez Perez
  • Maria-Dolores Chirlaque
  • Eva Ardanaz
  • Pilar Amiano
  • Ingegerd Johansson
  • Lena Maria Nilsson
  • Kay-Tee Khaw
  • Nick Wareham
  • Naomi E. Allen
  • Timothy J. Key
  • Sabina Rinaldi
  • Isabelle Romieu
  • Valentina Gallo
  • Elio Riboli
  • Carla H. van Gils
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Cancer and Oncology
Original languageEnglish
Article number15
JournalBreast Cancer Research
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Publication categoryResearch

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