0.001, respectively). The study type was found as the main source of heterogeneity for nitrates and nitrites. The heterogeneity for NDMA could not be eliminated completely through stratified analysis. Although significant associations were all observed in case-control studies, the cohort studies still showed a slight trend. The dose-response analysis indicated similar results as well. High nitrates intake was associated with a weak but statistically significant reduced risk of gastric cancer. Whereas increased consumption of nitrites and NDMA seemed to be risk factors for cancer. Due to the lack of uniformity for exposure assessment across studies, further prospective researches are warranted to verify these findings.