Global Iodine Deficiency Disorders Prevention Day observed on 21 October

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Who: Global Iodine Deficiency Disorders Prevention Day
What: Observed
When: 21 October 2015

21 October 2015: Global Iodine Deficiency Disorders Prevention Day

Global Iodine Deficiency Disorders (IDD) Prevention Day was observed on 21 October 2015 across the world to create awareness of the need to prevent iodine deficiency.

Almost one-third of world’s population is exposed to the risk of iodine deficiency disorders. Iodine deficiency is also the world’s single greatest cause of preventable mental retardation.
A diet low in iodine is the main cause of iodine deficiency. It usually occurs among populations living in areas where the soil has been depleted of iodine because of flooding, heavy rainfall or glaciations.

Around 71 million people in India suffer from Iodine Deficiency Disorders. A mapping of the risk showed that neither any state nor any union territory is completely free of the IDD risk with Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Bihar being the worst hit.

Iodine deficiency can lead to enlargement of the thyroid, hypothyroidism and mental retardation in infants and children whose mothers were iodine deficient during pregnancy.

India’s Contribution

In 1984, the Government of India adopted a policy decision with the goal of Universal Iodization of Salt. The sustained efforts of Salt Commissionerate over the last two decades in implementing the policy initiatives and the cooperation of the salt manufacturers have resulted in significant progress on Salt Iodisation Status in the country.