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Year : 2013  |  Volume : 10  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 12-14

Usage of non-iodized salt in North West India

1 Department of Endocrinology, Bharti Hospital, Karnal, India
2 Department of Obstetrics, Bharti Hospital, Karnal, India
3 Medical Student, Subharti Medical College, Meerut, India

Correspondence Address:
Sanjay Kalra
Department of Endocrinology, Bharti Hospital, Karnal - 132 001
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: The authors report "minimal" personal consumption of black salt

DOI: 10.4103/0973-0354.105840

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Background: Though the sale of non-iodized salt is banned by law, it is still available in, and used in, North West India. Aims: This study aimed to assess the patterns of sale and consumptions of non-iodized salt, and explore the reasons behind its continued use. Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional survey was conducted using a semi-structured questionnaire, administered to 16 wholesalers, and 32 retailers, spread over eight districts of three states, and to 100 hypothyroid patients, attending an endocrine clinic. Results: Non-iodized salt was available at all 16 wholesale shops, and 30 out of 32 retail shops. The self-reported sale of non-iodized salt, as a percentage of total salt sold, was 10-20% at wholesale and 0-5% at retail counters. All (100%) of the patients consumed non-iodized salt, reporting this as 2-10% of their total consumption. Common reasons for use were religious necessity, better flavor, and perceived medicinal property (88%, 77%, 62% respectively). Conclusion: Use of non-iodized salt is still prevalent in North West India. Concerted and sustained public awareness campaigns are needed to ensure optimal consumption of iodized salt.

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