Iodine Status of Taiwanese Population in 2013: 10 Years After Changing From Mandatory to Voluntary Salt Iodization.

Food Nutr Bull 2018 03 8;39(1):75-85. Epub 2017 Nov 8.

2 National Yang-Ming University School of Medicine, Taipei, Taiwan.

Background: In 2003, Taiwan's iodine policy changed from mandatory to voluntary. The Nutrition and Health Survey in Taiwan (NAHSIT) 2001-2002 for schoolchildren showed adequate iodine nutrition, while NAHSIT 2005-2008 for adults showed the iodine status was at borderline adequacy.

Objective: To investigate the iodine status of the Taiwanese population from schoolchildren to adulthood 10 years after the change of the salt iodization policy.

Method: Urinary iodine was measured in samples from subjects in NAHSIT 2013.

Results: The median urinary iodine concentration (UIC) of the Taiwanese population aged 6 years and above in 2013 was 96 μg/L, indicating mild iodine deficiency. The median UIC of 6- to 12-year-old schoolchildren was 124 μg/L (interquartile range [IQR]: 92-213 μg/L), and 115 μg/L (IQR: 80-166 μg/L), 125 μg/L (IQR: 74-161 μg/L), 73 μg/L (IQR: 52-131 μg/L), and 78 μg/L (IQR: 52-132 μg/L) in populations aged 13 to 18 years, 19 to 44 years, 45 to 64 years, and ≥65 years, respectively. Declining iodine nutrition in age groups ≥45 years old was noted that the median UIC of populations aged 45 to 64 years and ≥65 years was 99 and 88 μg/L, respectively, in NAHSIT 2005-2008. The median UIC of schoolchildren was not lower than that during the mandatory salt fortification period, but the distribution of urinary iodine levels signified a dietary pattern change.

Conclusion: Wide-ranging variation in iodine nutrition levels was observed in different age groups. Universal salt iodization, as suggested by the World Health Organization, should be the best strategy to achieve adequate iodine nutrition.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0379572117738883DOI Listing
March 2018
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