Background/Purpose: Iodine deficiency causes a broad spectrum of disorders across all ages. Mandatory salt iodization in Taiwan successfully reduced the goiter rate from 21.6% to 4.3% in schoolchildren surveyed in 1971. The program continued until 2003 when salt iodization was changed from mandatory to voluntary. The purpose of this study was to investigate the iodine status of Taiwanese individuals after the change in the iodine policy. Methods: Urinary iodine (UI) was measured in samples from adults in the Nutrition and Health Survey in Taiwan 2005-2008. Results: The median UI level was 100μg/L, and the percentage of populations with UI levels below 100μg/L and 50μg/L was 50.1% and 15.1%, respectively, indicating that the iodine status was borderline adequate. Men had a higher UI level than women (102μg/L vs. 98μg/L, p=0.003), and older individuals (age > 60 years) had a lower UI level than younger people, particularly in women. The iodine status of the population <50 years was sufficient, but it was insufficient in older groups. Mild iodine insufficiency was noted in all areas of Taiwan except the Southern area and Penghu islands, with the lowest UI level of 79μg/L in the Mountain area. Although the UI level of women of childbearing age (19-44 years) was 103μg/L, there may be a risk of iodine deficiency during pregnancy. Conclusion: The iodine nutrition of the Taiwanese population in 2005-2008 was borderline adequate, with insufficiency in some subgroups. Further monitoring of the iodine status is necessary.
|Journal||Journal of the Formosan Medical Association = Taiwan yi zhi|
|Publication status||Accepted/In press - Jan 25 2015|
- Iodized salt
- Nutrition survey
- Thyroid gland
ASJC Scopus subject areas