Rice Consumption and Subclinical Lung Disease in US Adults: Observational Evidence from the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis

Tiffany R. Sanchez, Elizabeth C. Oelsner, David J. Lederer, Christian M. Lo Cascio, Miranda R. Jones, Maria Grau-Perez, Kevin A. Francesconi, Walter Goessler, Matthew S. Perzanowski, R. Graham Barr, Ana Navas Acien

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1 Scopus citations


Rice accumulates arsenic, an established lung toxicant. Little is known about the association of rice consumption with arsenic-related health effects, particularly interstitial lung disease. Between 2000 and 2002, 6,814 white, black, Hispanic, and Chinese adults from 6 US cities were enrolled in the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis. We included 2,250 participants who had spirometry data, 2,557 with full-lung computed tomography (CT) scans, and 5,710 with cardiac CT scans. Rice consumption and 310 participants with urinary arsenic were assessed at baseline. Spirometry and full-lung CT-derived measures of total lung capacity and high attenuation area (HAA), and interstitial lung abnormalities were measured at examination 5. Cardiac CT-derived HAA was measured at 1-3 visits. Twelve percent of participants reported eating at least 1 serving of rice daily. Comparing data between that group with those who ate less than 1 serving weekly, the mean difference for forced vital capacity was-102 (95% confidence interval (CI):-198,-7) mL, and for forced expiratory volume in 1 second was-90 (95% CI:-170,-11) mL after adjustment for demographics, anthropometrics, dietary factors, and smoking. The cross-sectional adjusted percent difference for total lung capacity was-1.33% (95% CI:-4.29, 1.72) and for cardiac-based HAA was 3.66% (95% CI: 1.22, 6.15). Sensitivity analyses for urinary arsenic were consistent with rice findings. Daily rice consumption was associated with reduced lung function and greater cardiac-based HAA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1655-1665
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican journal of epidemiology
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2019


  • Oryza
  • arsenic
  • interstitial lung disease
  • spirometry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology


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