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Revista Española de Enfermedades Digestivas

Print version ISSN 1130-0108


BEJAR, Luis M.; GILI, Miguel; INFANTES, Beatriz  and  MARCOTT, Pamela F.. Effects of changes in dietary habits on colorectal cancer incidence in twenty countries from four continents during the period 1971-2002. Rev. esp. enferm. dig. [online]. 2011, vol.103, n.10, pp.519-529. ISSN 1130-0108.

Introduction: the incidence of colorectal cancer is one of the highest on a global level. Many epidemiological studies have identified risk and protective factors, many of which have a behavioral component and, therefore, are potentially avoidable or subject to modification. This study investigated the incidence rates of colorectal cancer by gender in twenty different countries, taking into account the dietary habits of the habitants of each country. Material and methods: adjusted incidence rates, according to gender, were obtained for each country from the International Agency for Research on Cancer during the period 1971-2002. Annual per capita consumption data of the different dietary variables were obtained for the period 1961-2007 from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Pearson's correlation coefficients were calculated comparing incidence rates according to gender with different dietary variable using ten-year delay intervals. Results: there is an important variation in trends of colorectal cancer incidence worldwide which were found to be related with the dietary habits of each country. Discussion: based on the trends observed, each country was classified into one of four different situations based on the range of values of their incidence rates and linear trends observed. Due to the potential of primary prevention programs for colorectal cancer and to the delay between changes in the exposure to risk and protective factors and the effects on the incidence of this tumor, the application of legislative and educational measures promoting a healthy diet has become an urgent issue to stop the increasing tendency of colorectal cancer reported worldwide.

Keywords : Alcohol drinking; Colorectal neoplasms; Diet; Epidemiology; Incidence.

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