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TOWARDS UNIVERSAL SALT IODIZATION: 34 COUNTRIES HAVE REACHED THE TARGET

Percentage of households consuming adequately iodized salt (2000–2006)

Iodized salt consumption

Iodized salt consumption

World Fit for Children target: Sustainable elimination of iodine deficiency disorders by 2005

Thirty-four countries have attained universal salt iodization, with at least 90 per cent of households consuming adequately iodized salt, while 60 countries have increased household consumption of adequately iodized salt by at least 20 per cent during the past decade. As of 2005, 120 countries had salt iodization programmes, compared with 90 countries in 2000.

Iodine deficiency is the single greatest cause of preventable mental retardation: Severe deficiencies cause cretinism, stillbirth and miscarriage, while even mild deficiency can significantly affect the learning ability of populations. It is easily preventable by ensuring that salt consumed by households is adequately iodized. Yet, 38 million newborns worldwide remain unprotected and there are still 36 countries where fewer than half of households consume iodized salt.

 

LATIN AMERICA/CARIBBEAN AND EAST ASIA/PACIFIC ARE NEAR THE TARGET ON UNIVERSAL SALT IODIZATION

Percentage of households consuming adequately iodized salt, by region (2000–2006)

 

 


 

 

STRIKING IMPROVEMENTS IN THE USE OF IODIZED SALT

Percentage of households consuming adequately iodized salt, selected countries (around 1995 and around 2005)


Note: The chart includes countries that have increased iodized salt consumption by 20 percentage points or more and whose current consumption levels are 70 per cent or more

38 MILLION NEWBORNS ARE NOT PROTECTED FROM IODINE DEFICIENCY

Number of births in households not consuming adequately iodized salt,  by region (2000–2006)

Source for figures on this page: UNICEF global databases, 2007.