Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

BACKGROUND: Lower consumption of whole grains is associated with higher risks of diabetes and coronary heart disease in Western populations, but evidence is still limited for stroke. Moreover, little is known in China, where the rates of cardiometabolic diseases are high and the grain types consumed are different from those in Western countries. OBJECTIVES: To examine the associations between coarse-grain (e.g., millet, corn, and sorghum) consumption and incident cardiometabolic diseases among Chinese adults. METHODS: The prospective China Kadoorie Biobank enrolled >0.5 million adults aged 30-79 years from 10 urban and rural areas during 2004-2008. At baseline, consumption frequencies (in 5 categories from "never" to "daily") of 12 major food groups, including coarse grains, were collected using a validated FFQ. After a median of 11 years of follow-up, 17,149 cases of diabetes, 29,876 ischemic strokes, 6097 hemorrhagic strokes, and 6704 major coronary events were recorded among 461,047 participants without a prevalence of major chronic diseases at baseline. Cox regression analyses were used to yield adjusted HRs for each disease associated with coarse-grain consumption. RESULTS: Overall, 13.8% of participants reported regularly consuming (i.e., ≥4 days/week, regular consumers) and 29.4% reported never or rarely consuming coarse grains (i.e., nonconsumers) at baseline. Compared with nonconsumers, regular consumers had lower risks of diabetes (adjusted HR, 0.88; 95% CI, 0.78-0.98) and ischemic stroke (adjusted HR, 0.86; 95% CI, 0.81-0.93), but not hemorrhagic stroke (adjusted HR, 0.96; 95% CI, 0.76-1.20) or major coronary events (adjusted HR, 0.95; 95% CI, 0.81-1.12). For diabetes and ischemic stroke, each 100 g/day increase in the usual intake of coarse grains was associated with 14% (adjusted HR, 0.86; 95% CI, 0.76-0.97) and 13% (adjusted HR, 0.87; 95% CI, 0.81-0.94) lower risks, respectively, with similar results in various subgroups. CONCLUSIONS: In Chinese adults, higher coarse-grain consumption is associated with lower risks of diabetes and ischemic stroke, supporting the promotion of coarse-grain consumption in China.

Original publication




Journal article


J Nutr

Publication Date





1476 - 1486


cardiovascular diseases, coarse grains, diabetes, prospective cohort study, stroke, whole grains, Adult, Cardiovascular Diseases, China, Diabetes Mellitus, Edible Grain, Humans, Ischemic Stroke, Prospective Studies, Risk Factors, Stroke