Aspects of dietary carbohydrate intake are not related to risk of colorectal polyps in the Tennessee Colorectal Polyp Study

Helen G. Coleman, Reid M. Ness, Walter E. Smalley, Wei Zheng, Martha J. Shrubsole

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
246 Downloads (Pure)


Purpose: High digestible carbohydrate intakes can induce hyperglycemia and hyperinsulinemia and collectively have been implicated in colorectal tumor development. Our aim was to explore the association between aspects of dietary carbohydrate intake and risk of colorectal adenomas and hyperplastic polyps in a large case–control study.

Methods: Colorectal polyp cases (n = 1,315 adenomas only, n = 566 hyperplastic polyps only and n = 394 both) and controls (n = 3,184) undergoing colonoscopy were recruited between 2003 and 2010 in Nashville, Tennessee, USA. Dietary intakes were estimated by a 108-item food frequency questionnaire. Unconditional logistic regression analysis was applied to determine odds ratios (OR) and corresponding 95 % confidence intervals (CI) for colorectal polyps according to dietary carbohydrate intakes, after adjustment for potential confounders.

Results: No significant associations were detected for risk of colorectal adenomas when comparing the highest versus lowest quartiles of intake for total sugars (OR 1.03; 95 % CI 0.84–1.26), starch (OR 1.01; 95 % CI 0.81–1.26), total or available carbohydrate intakes. Similar null associations were observed between dietary carbohydrate intakes and risk of hyperplastic polyps, or concurrent adenomas and hyperplastic polyps.

Conclusion: In this US population, digestible carbohydrate intakes were not associated with risk of colorectal polyps, suggesting that dietary carbohydrate does not have an etiological role in the early stages of colorectal carcinogenesis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1197-1202
Number of pages6
JournalCancer Causes & Control: an international journal of studies of cancer in human populations
Issue number8
Early online date09 Jun 2015
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2015


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