Apart from strong genotoxic carcinogens, other environmental factors are implicated in both causes and prevention of cancers. A hospital based case control study was conducted to examine the role of diet in the aetiology of oral and oropharyngeal cancers. In this article, past dietary intake and nutrient estimates, obtained through diet history method and biochemical nutritional status at the onset of the disease are presented. The results of the study suggest that poor dietary intake of vegetables and fruits coupled with low estimated intake of betacarotene, thiamine, riboflavin, folate, vitamin C, iron and copper, modify the risk potential. The biological indicators of the nutritional status such as plasma vitamin A, E, red cell folate and plasma zinc were significantly reduced in cases and yielded moderate risk estimates. The risk estimates though of moderate magnitude are of importance in relatively homogeneous subjects with respect to diet and nutrition. The findings are in line with several other epidemiological observations. The combined effects of micro nutrients appears to be protective in countering the adverse effects of exogenous exposures to tobacco. The protective role of vegetables and fruits is of potential interest in terms of etiologic causes and prevention.