Iodine Global Network (IGN)

29.02.2016   IDD Newsletter 1/2016

In this issue:
  • EUthyroid project: making Europe smarter with iodine
  • Pregnant women in Sweden and Turkey are iodine deficient despite optimal iodine intakes in school-age children
  • Maintaining IDD elimination in Mongolia
  • Morocco: iodine supplements reduce cardiovascular disease risk factors in women
  • How access to iodized salt changed in a decade: 2000–2010
  • Egypt: Almost all pregnant women in Alexandria are iodine sufficient
  • Iodized salt success in Sierra Leone makes women iodine sufficient
  • Prenatal vitamins in Brazil contain too little iodine for pregnant women
  • Are American alligators getting enough iodine in their diet?
  • "Goiter and Beyond": Philippines celebrates Goiter Awareness Week
  • Headshots 4 Hunger: a unique campaign to support effective altruism

Meetings and Announcements:
  • Basil Hetzel’s letters and manuscripts collection is available online
  • Three decades of the IDD Newsletter
  • The IGN annual Board and Management Council Meeting
  • Symposium on iodine and pregnancy in London, UK
  • In memoriam: Prof. Ebenezer Asibey-Berko (1944–2015)

Articles

EUthyroid: making Europe smarter with iodine

(Based on EUthyroid project website and Henry Völzke et al. Thyroid 2016, 26(2))
Programs set up to prevent iodine deficiency disorders (IDD) may not remain effective as a result of changing government policies, commercial factors, and human behavior that may affect them in unpredictable ways. To ensure that IDD prevention is effective, we need standardized monitoring and a better understanding of health outcomes and economic benefits. A new pan-European research initiative called EUthyroid has been launched to address these gaps.

Pregnant women in Sweden and Turkey are iodine deficient despite optimal iodine intakes in school-age children

Surveys estimating iodine deficiency traditionally used the results from school-age children (SAC) as a proxy for iodine status in the general population. Recently, this approach has been challenged: children tend to consume disproportionately more iodine from milk and dairy products, and SAC are not the primary target of iodine interventions. Two surveys, in Turkey and in Sweden, provide new data to support this finding.

Maintaining IDD elimination in Mongolia

(Ming Qian and N. Bolormaa)
Mongolia’s first official goiter studies dating back to the 1960s reported total goiter rates (TGR) of 32–45% among 7–12 year-olds in UB. During the 1970s and 1980s, the TGR continued to fluctuate between 23% and 47%. In 1992, the Ministry of Health (MOH) conducted the first national preliminary survey on iodine deficiency with the technical assistance of UNICEF. The results showed that Mongolia’s population was at risk of severe iodine deficiency.

Iodine supplements reduce cardiovascular disease risk factors in women

(Excerpted from Herter-Aeberli I et al. The Journal of Nutrition, July 22, 2015)
A randomized controlled trial in Morocco shows that iodine supplements improve the lipid profile in overweight women who are moderately or severely iodine deficient.

How access to iodized salt changed in a decade: 2000–2010

(Thach Duc Tran, Basil Hetzel & Jane Fisher. Bull World Health Organ 2016, 94:122–129)
Based on MICS conducted in 2000 and 2010 in 11 low and lower-middle income countries (Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iraq, Kenya, Mongolia, Republic of Moldova, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Swaziland, Viet Nam), the authors calculated two indices of household salt iodization, and also explored the associations between these indices and socio-economic variables (HDI, GDP) within and between countries.

Egypt: Almost all pregnant women in Alexandria are iodine sufficient

(Nawal A. Elsayed, Samar Abdel-Mohsen, Samiha A. Mokhtar, Dalia I. Tayel and Mohga M. Fikry)
In Egypt, the national salt iodization program was implemented in 1996, and a national screening and management program for neonatal hypothyroidism began in 2000–2001. Alexandria is one of 29 governorates of Egypt, which lies on the Mediterranean sea. Historically, Egypt has a high prevalence of iodine deficiency disorders (IDD), particularly in the New Valley governorate in the western desert. But there is little data on the prevalence of iodine deficiency among pregnant women.

Iodization success in Sierra Leone makes women iodine sufficient

(Excerpted from Rohner F, et al. Nutrients 2016, 8, 74)
Sierra Leone’s modern history has been overshadowed by a brutal civil war which ended in 2002. Although the country has experienced substantial economic growth in recent years, the ruinous effects of the unrest continue to be felt. More recently, the 2014 Ebola outbreak overburdened the weak healthcare infrastructure, leading to a humanitarian crisis situation and a negative spiral of weaker economic growth. Salt iodization has been a recent public health success which stands out clearly against this backdrop.

Prenatal vitamins in Brazil contain too little iodine for pregnant women

(Excerpted from Villagelin D, et al. Thyroid 2016, 26(2))
Maternal iodine deficiency results in altered maternal and fetal thyroid hormone synthesis, which is proportional to the degree and duration of iodine deprivation. A recent meta-analysis demonstrated differences in the prevalence of iodine deficiency disorders in individuals from different age groups living in different regions of Brazil. Although data remain scarce in pregnant women, there is some indication that a substantial proportion could be at risk of iodine deficiency.

Are American alligators getting enough iodine in their diet?

(Excerpted from: Boggs ASP et al. General and Comparative Endocrinology 2016, 226:5–13)
The American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis), generally a freshwater species, is known to forage in marine environments despite the lack of a lingual salt secreting gland found in other crocodylids. Estuarine and marine foraging could lead to increased dietary uptake of iodine. The iodine content of estuaries has been shown to be dependent on the marine end-member sources, with more iodine in the saltier environments.

”Goiter…and Beyond”: Philippines celebrates Goiter Awareness Week

(Theo San Luis)
“Goiter…and Beyond”—this was the slogan and message of the keynote address delivered on January 29 to culminate the events of the 10th Goiter Awareness Week (GAW) held in Dapitan City in the Province of Zamboanga del Norte (ZdN) in Region 9 in Mindanao, Southern Philippines. According to the 2013 National Nutrition Survey conducted in school-age children, Region 9 is the only geographical area that remains iodine deficient.

Headshots 4 Hunger: a unique campaign to support effective altruism

(Interview with Jenn Korman, founder of Don't Wait Donate)
Headshots 4 Hunger is a new unique campaign dedicated to fighting micronutrient deficiency by donating proceeds to just two effective charities: the Iodine Global Network and Project Healthy Children. It is the brainchild of Its creator is Jenn Korman, a St. Louis-based photographer with a passion for effecting positive change in the world, and founder of Don't Wait Donate.