Inflammatory potential of diet and risk of lymphoma in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Introduction: Chronic inflammation plays a critical role in lymphomagenesis and several dietary factors seem to be involved its regulation. The aim of the current study was to assess the association between the inflammatory potential of the diet and the risk of lymphoma and its subtypes in the European Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) study. Methods: The analysis included 476,160 subjects with an average follow-up of 13.9 years, during which 3,136 lymphomas (135 Hodgkin lymphoma (HL), 2606 non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) and 395 NOS) were identified. The dietary inflammatory potential was assessed by means of an inflammatory score of the diet (ISD), calculated using 28 dietary components and their corresponding inflammatory weights. The association between the ISD and lymphoma risk was estimated by hazard ratios (HR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) calculated by multivariable Cox regression models adjusted for potential confounders. Results: The ISD was not associated with overall lymphoma risk. Among lymphoma subtypes, a positive association between the ISD and mature B-cell NHL (HR for a 1-SD increase: 1.07 (95% CI 1.01; 1.14), p trend = 0.03) was observed. No statistically significant association was found among other subtypes. However, albeit with smaller number of cases, a suggestive association was observed for HL (HR for a 1-SD increase = 1.22 (95% CI 0.94; 1.57), p trend 0.13). Conclusions: Our findings suggested that a high ISD score, reflecting a pro-inflammatory diet, was modestly positively associated with the risk of B-cell lymphoma subtypes. Further large prospective studies on low-grade inflammation induced by diet are warranted to confirm these findings.


  • Marta Solans
  • Yolanda Benavente
  • Marc Saez
  • Antonio Agudo
  • Paula Jakszyn
  • Sabine Naudin
  • Fatemeh Saberi Hosnijeh
  • Marc Gunter
  • Inge Huybrechts
  • Pietro Ferrari
  • Caroline Besson
  • Yahya Mahamat-Saleh
  • Marie Christine Boutron-Ruault
  • Tilman Kühn
  • Rudolf Kaaks
  • Heiner Boeing
  • Cristina Lasheras
  • Maria Jose Sánchez
  • Pilar Amiano
  • María Dolores Chirlaque
  • Eva Ardanaz
  • Julie A. Schmidt
  • Paolo Vineis
  • Elio Riboli
  • Antonia Trichopoulou
  • Anna Karakatsani
  • Elisavet Valanou
  • Giovanna Masala
  • Claudia Agnoli
  • Rosario Tumino
  • Carlotta Sacerdote
  • Amalia Mattiello
  • Guri Skeie
  • Elisabete Weiderpass
  • Florentin Späth
  • Lena Maria Nilsson
  • Christina C. Dahm
  • Kim Overvad
  • Kristina Elin Nielsen Petersen
  • Anne Tjønneland
  • Silvia de Sanjose
  • Roel Vermeulen
  • Alexandra Nieters
  • Delphine Casabonne
External organisations
  • CIBER Epidemiology and Public Health (CIBERESP)
  • University of Girona
  • Catalan Institute of Oncology
  • Bellvitge Biomedical Research Institute
  • International Agency for Research on Cancer, World Health Organization
  • Utrecht University
  • Erasmus University Medical Center
  • Centre Hospitalier de Versailles
  • University of Paris-Sud
  • Stabilite genetique et oncogenese
  • German Cancer Research Centre
  • German Institute of Human Nutrition
  • University of Oviedo
  • Andalusian School of Public Health
  • Public Health Division of Gipuzkoa
  • Murcia Regional Health Council
  • Health Research Institute of Navarra (IDISNA)
  • University of Oxford
  • Imperial College London
  • Hellenic Health Foundation, Athens
  • National and Kapodistrian University of Athens
  • Institute for Cancer Research, Prevention and Clinical Network (ISPRO)
  • Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori
  • Civic and M.P Arezzo Hospital
  • Citta' della Salute e della Scienza Hospital-University of Turin
  • University of Naples Federico II
  • UiT The Arctic University of Norway, Tromsø
  • Cancer Registry of Norway, Institute of Population-Based Cancer Research
  • Karolinska Institutet
  • University of Helsinki
  • Skåne University Hospital
  • Umeå University
  • Aarhus University
  • Danish Cancer Society Research Center
  • University of Copenhagen
  • Albert-Ludwigs University Freiburg
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Cancer and Oncology


  • Chronic inflammation, Inflammatory score of the diet, Lymphoma, Nutrition, Prospective studies
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)813-823
Number of pages11
JournalEuropean Journal of Nutrition
Issue number2
Early online date2019
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Mar
Publication categoryResearch