For postmenopausal women, lycopene intake seems to be inversely associated with the risk of renal cell carcinoma (RCC), according to a study published in Cancer.

Won Jin Ho, M.D., from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, and colleagues examined the correlation between antioxidant micronutrients and the risk of RCC. Data were included for 96,196 postmenopausal women enrolled in the Women’s Health Initiative between 1993 and 1998 who were followed through July 2013.

A baseline food frequency questionnaire was used to estimate dietary micronutrient intake, and an interview-based inventory procedure was used to collect data on supplement use. Follow-up surveys were used to ascertain RCC cases.

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The researchers identified 240 women with RCC during follow-up. There was an inverse correlation for lycopene intake with RCC risk (P = 0.015); the highest versus the lowest intake was associated with a 39 percent lower risk of RCC (hazard ratio, 0.61). There were no other correlations for micronutrients with RCC risk.

“The current results suggest that further investigation into the correlation between lycopene intake and the risk of RCC is warranted,” the authors write.


  1. Ho, Won Jin, MD, MS, et al. “Antioxidant micronutrients and the risk of renal cell carcinoma in the Women’s Health Initiative cohort.” Cancer. DOI: 10.1002/cncr.29091. February 15, 2015.