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Nat Commun DOI:10.1038/s41467-020-15193-0

Comprehensive genomic analysis of dietary habits in UK Biobank identifies hundreds of genetic associations.

Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2020
AuthorsCole, JB, Florez, JC, Hirschhorn, JN
JournalNat Commun
Date Published2020 Mar 19

Unhealthful dietary habits are leading risk factors for life-altering diseases and mortality. Large-scale biobanks now enable genetic analysis of traits with modest heritability, such as diet. We perform a genomewide association on 85 single food intake and 85 principal component-derived dietary patterns from food frequency questionnaires in UK Biobank. We identify 814 associated loci, including olfactory receptor associations with fruit and tea intake; 136 associations are only identified using dietary patterns. Mendelian randomization suggests our top healthful dietary pattern driven by wholemeal vs. white bread consumption is causally influenced by factors correlated with education but is not strongly causal for coronary artery disease or type 2 diabetes. Overall, we demonstrate the value in complementary phenotyping approaches to complex dietary datasets, and the utility of genomic analysis to understand the relationships between diet and human health.


Alternate JournalNat Commun
PubMed ID32193382
PubMed Central IDPMC7081342