CORDIS - EU research results
CORDIS

The next step towards the elimination of iodine deficiency and preventable iodine-related disorders in Europe

Project description

Raising awareness about iodine deficiency

When our body fails to get enough iodine – an essential nutrient in the diet – it leads to enlarged thyroid and hypothyroidism. Apart from thyroid disease, iodine deficiency during pregnancy may affect the child’s mental health. The EU-funded EUthyroid2 project aims to raise awareness of the importance of iodine, which in many countries is neglected. The consortium will target adolescents and young women to inform them about how iodine deficiency may impact their own thyroid and general health as well as that of their offspring. Interventions at community level and ambulatory care will further help set the foundation for better health without iodine-related disorders.

Objective

The iodine status is a primary determinant of thyroid disorders, which are a major cause of morbidity, particularly in women. In addition, even mild-to-moderate iodine deficiency during pregnancy is related to neurocognitive impairment in the offspring. Iodine deficiency imposes tremendous costs on the health-care systems of affected regions, but can easily be prevented by iodine fortification programmes. In many countries, iodine deficiency receives surprisingly little publicity.
The initial EUthyroid consortium evaluated European prevention programmes against iodine deficiency and uncovered major limitations including the low awareness on the importance of iodine for healthy living. EUthyroid2 will now fill important gaps in the prevention of iodine deficiency in Europe and beyond.
The main objective of EUthyroid2 is to improve the low awareness with respect to iodine deficiency-related risks in adolescents and young women. The major aim is to find best practice models for accessing and informing them to increase their awareness and to improve their iodine status in order to lay the foundation for their own thyroid and general health and that of their offspring.
Implementation studies and community-based randomised-controlled trials will be conducted with the objective of increasing iodine-related awareness in adolescents and young women up to age of 24 before pregnancy. The interventions are multimodal and performed in the two settings educational system and ambulatory care in eight study regions.
As public health project EUthyroid2 is not only science, but will also serve our societies. Therefore, dissemination of findings to various sectors of our countries and the EU will be of utmost importance. By finding best practice models to raise the awareness on the importance of iodine for a healthy life of their own and their offspring in young people, EUthyroid2 will lay the foundation for a cost-effective way to eradicate iodine deficiency-related disorders.

Coordinator

UNIVERSITATSMEDIZIN GREIFSWALD KORPERSCHAFT DES OFFENTLICHEN RECHTS
Net EU contribution
€ 1 010 015,00
Address
FLEISCHMANNSTRASSE 8
17489 Greifswald
Germany

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Region
Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Vorpommern-Greifswald
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Links
Total cost
€ 1 010 015,00

Participants (10)

Partners (4)