Research PapersOral cancer in Southern India: the influence of body size, diet, infections and sexual practicesRajkumar, T1; Sridhar, H2; Balaram, P3; Vaccarella, S4; Gajalakshmi, V1; Nandakumar, A2; Ramdas, K3; Jayshree, R2; Muñoz, N4; Herrero, R5; Franceschi, S4; Weiderpass, E4 6Author Information 1Cancer Institute (WIA), Adyar, Chennai 600 020, India 2Kidwai Memorial Institute of Oncology, Bangalore 560 029, Karnataka, India 3Regional Cancer Centre, Trivandrum 695 011, Kerala, India 4International Agency for Research on Cancer, 150, Cours Albert Thomas, F-69372, Lyon Cedex 08, France 5Proyecto Epidemiologico Guanacaste, San Jose, Costa Rica 6Karolinska Institutet, Department of Medical Epidemiology, Stockholm, Sweden Correspondence to: E Weiderpass. Fax: (+33) 4 72 73 83 45. E-mail: [email protected] Received 15 May 2002 Accepted 22 November 2002 European Journal of Cancer Prevention: April 2003 - Volume 12 - Issue 2 - p 135-143 Buy Abstract Between 1996 and 1999, we carried out a study in Southern India on risk factors for oral cancer. The study included 591 incident cases of cancer of the oral cavity (282 women) and 582 hospital controls (290 women). Height was unrelated to oral cancer risk. Body mass index (weight in kilograms/height in metres squared) was inversely associated with risk (P for trend<0.001). Paan chewers with low BMI were at particularly high risk. Risk was increased among subjects consuming meat (odds ratio (OR) 1.54, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.00–2.37), ham and salami (OR 4.40, 95% CI 2.88–6.71) two or more times per week. Frequent consumption of fish, eggs, raw green vegetables, cruciferous vegetables, carrots, pulses, apples or pears, citrus fruit, and overall consumption of vegetables and fruit decreased oral cancer risk (P for trend for each of these items less than or equal to 0.001). The risk associated with low consumption of vegetables was higher among smokers than among non-smokers. Men, but not women, who practised oral sex had an increased oral cancer risk (OR 3.14, 95% CI 1.15–8.63). Women with more than one sexual partner during life were at increased oral cancer risk (OR 9.93, 95% CI 1.57–62.9). © 2003 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.