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Acid-Producing Diet and Depressive Symptoms among Breast Cancer Survivors: A Longitudinal Study.

  • Author(s): Wu, Tianying;
  • Hsu, Fang-Chi;
  • Pierce, John P
  • et al.

The incidence of depression is two-to-three times higher in cancer survivors than the general population. Acid-producing diets may play important roles in the development of depression. Cancer survivors are more susceptible to acid-producing diets, yet few prospective studies have investigated the association of acid-producing diets with depression among breast cancer survivors. We leveraged a large cohort of 2975 early stage breast cancer survivors, which collected detailed dietary data via 24-h recalls. Potential renal acid load (PRAL) and net endogenous acid production (NEAP), two commonly used dietary acid load scores, were used to estimate acid-producing diets. Intakes of PRAL and NEAP were assessed at baseline and years one and four. Increased PRAL and NEAP were each independently associated with increased depression in the longitudinal analyses, after adjusting for covariates. The magnitude of the associations was stronger for PRAL than NEAP. Women with the highest quartile intakes of PRAL had 1.34 (95% CI 1.11-1.62) times the risk of depression compared to women with the lowest quartile. Furthermore, we also observed a joint impact of PRAL and younger age on depression, as well as a joint impact of PRAL and physical activity on depression. Decreasing the consumption of acid-producing diets may be a novel and practical strategy for reducing depressive symptoms among breast cancer survivors, especially those who are younger and have a sedentary lifestyle.

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