Association of dietary habits with severity of acute pancreatitis

Mohannad Dugum, Amir Gougol, Pedram Paragomi, Xiaotian Gao, Bassem Matta, Cemal Yazici, Gong Tang, Phil Greer, Ioannis Pothoulakis, Stephen J.D. O'Keefe, David C. Whitcomb, Dhiraj Yadav, Georgios I. Papachristou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: The effect of diet on risk of acute pancreatitis (AP) has been suggested by prior studies, but the association of dietary habits with severity of AP has not been previously evaluated. Objective: The objective of the study was to assess differences in reported dietary habits in patients with severe AP compared with those with mild or moderate AP. Methods: A prospectively maintained cohort of patients with AP was utilized. A brief questionnaire on dietary habits was implemented. Dietary habits were categorized based on the overall type of diet, fruit/vegetable servings, fat content, dairy consumption, dessert/sweets consumption, and fluid intake. Patients were grouped into mild/moderate and severe AP. Multivariate analysis was used to determine whether dietary habits have an independent association with AP severity. Results: 407 patients with AP were studied. Mean patient age was 51 y, and 202 (50%) were men. 29% of patients were smokers and 46% actively consumed alcohol. 225 patients had mild AP, 103 moderate AP, and 79 developed severe AP. The 3 groups were comparable in race, body mass index, etiology of AP, and comorbidities. Dietary factors were overall comparable between the groups except for diet type: subjects with severe AP had a higher percentage of consuming a meat-rich diet (84%) than patients with mild AP (72%) and moderate AP (67%) (P = 0.04). Based on multivariable logistic regression, the OR of developing severe AP was 2.5 (95% CI: 1.24-5.32, P = 0.01) between patients who eat a meat-rich diet and those who consume a vegetable-based diet. Conclusions: A meat-rich diet is independently associated with the development of persistent organ failure (severe disease) in patients with AP. These findings require further evaluation and could be useful for patient counseling, risk stratification, and disease prevention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalCurrent Developments in Nutrition
Issue number12
StatePublished - 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Acute pancreatitis
  • Diet
  • Dietary questionnaires
  • Disease severity
  • Revised Atlanta Classification

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Food Science
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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