In a series of 213 incident cases of laryngeal cancer, interviewed 10 years ago in the framework of a population-based case-control study, survival has been evaluated in relation to tobacco, alcohol consumption and dietary habits. The occurrence of other primaries and stage at diagnosis were taken into account as possible confounding factors. Heavy tobacco smoking appeared to worsen the prognosis in a dose-dependent manner. No effect was apparent for alcohol. The consumption of vegetables, citrus fruit, olive oil and orange juice was associated with a better prognosis; an opposite association was found for butter and milk. A tentative differentiation between dietary patterns showed a 36% advantage in survival for those whose dietary habits corresponded to the “Mediterranean diet”. Our results support the hypothesis that diet may interfere with the mechanisms of cancer progression, and suggest that dietary intervention could be a means of improving survival in laryngeal cancer patients. © 1996 Wiley-Liss, Inc.