Enterolignans are biphenolic compounds that possess several biologic activities whereby they may influence carcinogenesis. The authors investigated the association between plasma enterolactone and enterodiol and colorectal cancer risk in a Dutch prospective study. Among more than 35,000 participants aged 20-59 years, 160 colorectal cancer cases were diagnosed after 7.5 years of follow-up (1987-2003). Cohort members who were frequency-matched to the cases on age, sex, and study center were selected as controls (n = 387). Plasma enterodiol and enterolactone were not associated with risk of colorectal cancer after adjustment for known colorectal cancer risk factors (highest quartile vs. lowest: for enterodiol, odds ratio = 1.11, 95% confidence interval: 0.56, 2.20 (p-trend = 0.75); for enterolactone, odds ratio = 1.70, 95% confidence interval: 0.88, 3.27 (p-trend = 0.15)). However, sex (p-interaction = 0.06) and body mass index (p-interaction < 0.01) modified the relation between plasma enterolactone and colorectal cancer risk; increased risks were observed among women and subjects with a high body mass index. The association between plasma enterodiol and colorectal cancer risk was modified by smoking status; risk was increased among current smokers (p-interaction < 0.01). These findings do not support the hypothesis that high plasma enterodiol or enterolactone concentrations are associated with reduced risk of colorectal cancer.