Literature suggests that early exposure to the farming environment protects against atopy and asthma; few studies have examined pulmonary function. We evaluated associations between early-life farming exposures and pulmonary function in 3061 adults (mean age=63) from a US farming population using linear regression. Childhood raw milk consumption was associated with higher FEV1 (β=49.5 mL, 95% CI 2.8 to 96.1 mL, p=0.04) and FVC (β=66.2 mL, 95% CI 13.2 to 119.1 mL, p=0.01). We did not find appreciable associations with other early-life farming exposures. We report a novel association between raw milk consumption and higher pulmonary function that lasts into older adulthood.
- COPD epidemiology
- Asthma Epidemiology
- Allergic lung disease
- Occupational Lung Disease
- Respiratory Measurement
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Contributors All authors meet the ICMJE recommendations for authorship (ie, all authors contributed to the conception/design of the study or the acquisition/analysis/interpretation of the data and assisted in drafting/revising the manuscript, including approving the manuscript for submission).
Funding This work was supported by the intramural research program of the NIH, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) (Z01-ES049030 and ZO1-ES102385) and National Cancer Institute (NCI) (Z01-CP010119). This work was also supported in part by American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funds through NIEHS contract number NO1-ES-55546.
Competing interests None declared.
Ethics approval US National Institutes of Health.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
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