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African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development
Rural Outreach Program
ISSN: 1684-5358
EISSN: 1684-5374
Vol. 13, No. 5, 2013, pp. 8401-8414
Bioline Code: nd13092
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge

African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development, Vol. 13, No. 5, 2013, pp. 8401-8414

Gebreegziabher, Tafere; Teyike, Nega; Mulugeta, Afework; Abebe, Yewelsew; Hambidge, K. M. & Stoecker, B. J.


Iodine deficiency has been reported to affect a large number of people in Ethiopia. Although significant progress against iodine deficiency disorders (IDD) has been reported worldwide, millions of people remain with insufficient iodine intake. Multiple factors may contribute to iodine deficiency. Hence, the objective of this study was to investigate iodine deficiency and dietary intake of iodine. A crosssectional survey design was used to assess urinary iodine concentration (UIC), goiter and dietary intake of iodine in a sample of 202 non-pregnant women living in three rural communities of Sidama Zone, southern Ethiopia. Urinary iodine concentration was analyzed using the Sandell-Kolthoff reaction, goiter was assessed using palpation and dietary source of iodine was assessed using a food frequency questionnaire. Data were analyzed using selected descriptive and analytical statistical measures with SAS software. Mean (SD) age, mid upper arm circumference (MUAC) and body mass index [BMI - Wt(kg)/(Ht(m))2] were 30.8 (7.9) y, 24.8(2.5) cm and 20 (2.2) respectively. Median UIC was 37.2 μg/L. Participants with UIC <20 μg/L, classified as severely iodine deficient were 22.8%; 46.5% had UIC between 20 to <50 μg/L, classified as moderately iodine deficient, and 27.2 % had UIC in the mild deficiency range of 50 to <100 μg/L. Only 3.5% of the women had UIC ≥ 100 μg/L. The total goiter rate was 15.9%, which was 1.5% visible and 14.4% palpable goiter. A majority of the participants consumed Enset ( E. ventricosum check for this species in other resources ), corn and kale frequently and meat was consumed rarely. None of the participants reported ever consuming iodized salt or ever having heard about use of iodized salt. Adjacent communities (Alamura, Tullo and Finchawa) showed significant differences in UIC, goiter rate and frequency of fish and dairy consumption. The findings of the present study revealed that iodine status of the population is a significant public health problem. Hence, there is a need to supply iodized salt in order to achieve the goal of elimination of iodine deficiency disorders in the community.

urinary iodine; goiter; food frequency

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