Poster Topical Area: Global Nutrition
Location: Hall D
Poster Board Number: 566
Objectives: We assessed the national, regional and global iodine status based on median urinary iodine concentration (UIC) in school-age children with the aim to evaluate the impact of national salt iodization programs in the general population. For the first time, we also present global estimates of iodine status in women of reproductive age and pregnant women, who are at greater risk of iodine deficiency due to higher iodine requirements.
Methods: We identified national and sub-national population-based UIC surveys conducted between 2002 and 2017 through a systematic PubMed search, organization national focal points, and other national and international agencies. We compared the current global iodine status to previous global estimates from 2003, 2007 and 2011.
Results: Out of 194 WHO member states, population-representative data are available for 140 countries. In addition, 52 countries have reported surveys in women of reproductive age and 72 countries in pregnant women. Overall, there has been a remarkable improvement in the global iodine status from 2003 to 2017: the number of iodine-deficient countries decreased from 54 to 19 and the number of countries with adequate iodine intake increased from 67 to 111 (Figure 1). In 2017, less than 10% of the world's population live in countries classified as iodine deficient based on iodine intakes in the general population. However, 18 and 39 countries report iodine deficiency in women of reproductive age and pregnant women, respectively. Further challenges for national salt iodization programs include re-emerging iodine deficiency in at least three countries, and excessive iodine intakes in 10 countries.
Conclusions: The goal of optimal iodine nutrition in the general population is within reach, thanks to the highly successful global strategy of salt iodization. However, the coverage of adequately iodized salt in households as well as in food production must be strengthened in many countries to meet the dietary needs of women of reproductive age and pregnant women.
The Iodine Global Network
Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland