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Association between pro-inflammatory diet and abdominal pain: Cross-sectional and case-control study from UK biobank and NHANES 2017-2020.

Pain Medicine 2024 April 24
BACKGROUND: There is a close association between diet and abdominal pain, however, relationship between inflammatory diet and characteristics of abdominal pain has not been characterized yet.

METHODS: This study analyzed baseline data from the UK Biobank, 3-item DHQ-Abdominal Pain Questionnaire (DHQ-3Q) which including abdominal pain in the past three months, severity of abdominal pain, and frequency of abdominal pain, and data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) from 2017 to 2020. Energy-adjusted Dietary Inflammatory Index (E-DII), constructed based on 26 or 27 nutrients, was analyzed using continuous or categorical methods. Logistic regression and restricted cubic spline analyses examined the association between E-DII and abdominal pain.

RESULTS: In UK Biobank, compared to participants in the lowest quintile of E-DII, the adjusted ORs for the highest quintile were 1.12 (95% CI 1.02-1.24; p = 0.022), 1.05 (95% CI 1.00-1.09; p = 0.030), 1.26 (95% CI 1.17-1.36; p < 0.001), and 1.10 (95% CI 1.00-1.20; p = 0.044) for chronic abdominal pain, abdominal pain in the past three months, severity of abdominal pain, and frequency of abdominal pain, respectively. In NHANES, compared to participants in the lowest quintile of E-DII, the adjusted ORs for the highest quintile were 1.46 (95% CI 1.20-1.77; p < 0.001), 1.75 (95% CI 1.20-2.60; p = 0.005), 1.45 (95% CI 1.14-1.87; p = 0.003), and 1.18 (95% CI 0.82-1.72; p = 0.380) for abdominal pain in the past year, upper left abdominal pain, upper middle abdominal pain, and upper right abdominal pain. Additionally, there was a nonlinear correlation between E-DII score and DHQ-3Q (p nonlinear <0.001).

CONCLUSION: Following a pro-inflammatory diet is linked to a higher likelihood of experiencing abdominal pain, as well as increased severity and frequency of such pain. Therefore, further longitudinal studies are necessary to investigate this relationship.

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