The Iodine Status of Queensland Preschool Children After the Introduction of Mandatory Iodine Fortification in Bread: An Exploratory Study Using a Convenience Sample
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Introduction Appropriate dietary iodine is essential for thyroid hormone synthesis, especially in young children. Following an iodine fortification in bread initiative, approximately 6 % of Australian preschool children were expected to have an excessive iodine status. The aim of this study was to document the current iodine status of preschool children using urinary iodine concentration (UIC) as a biomarker of iodine intake. Methods A convenience sample of fifty-one preschool children, aged 2–3 years, were recruited from south east Queensland. UIC was ascertained from spot morning and afternoon urine samples collected on two consecutive days and food frequency questionnaires were completed for each participant. Dietary iodine intake was extrapolated from UIC assuming 90 % of dietary iodine is excreted in urine and a urine volume of 0.5 L/day. Results A median UIC of 223.3 μg/L was found. The calculated median dietary iodine intake was 124.8 μg/day (SD 47.0) with 9.8 % of samples above the upper level of 200 μg for dietary iodine for children within this age group. No foods were associated with UIC. Discussion Limited by sample size and recruitment strategies, no association was found between usual food intake and UIC. Extrapolated dietary iodine intake indicated that children within this cohort consumed adequate amounts of dietary iodine, although the number of children consuming above the upper limit of 300 μg/day was almost double of expected. The development of a UIC criteria to assess appropriate parameters for varying degrees of iodine status is required for the monitoring of iodine nutrition in this vulnerable age group.
KeywordsIodine Public health Child nutrition Food intake Micronutrients
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