The National Iodine and Salt Intake Survey (NISI) 2014–2015 was undertaken to estimate household iodised salt coverage at national and sub-national levels in India.
Cross-sectional survey with multistage stratified random sampling.
India was divided into six geographic zones (South, West, Central, North, East and North-East) and each zone was further stratified into rural and urban areas to yield twelve distinct survey strata.
The target respondent from each household was selected as per predefined priority; wife of the household head, followed by women of reproductive age, followed by any adult available during the visit.
Households (n 5717) were surveyed and salt samples (n 5682) were analysed. Household coverage of iodised salt (iodine≥5 ppm) was 91·7 (95 % CI 91·0, 92·7) %. Adequately iodised salt (iodine≥15 ppm) was consumed in 77·5 (95 % CI 76·4, 78·6) % of households. Significant differences in coverage were seen across six geographic regions, with North and North-East zones on the verge of achieving the universal salt iodisation target of >90 % coverage. Coverage of households with adequately iodised salt (adjusted OR; 95 % CI) was significantly less in rural households (0·55; 0·47, 0·64), lower/backward castes (0·84; 0·72, 0·98), deprived households (0·72; 0·61, 0·85) as assessed by multidimensional poverty index, households with non-diverse diet (0·73; 0·62, 0·86) and households using non-packaged salt (0·48; 0·39, 0·59) and non-refined salt (0·17; 0·15, 0·20).
India is within striking reach of achieving universal salt iodisation. However, significant differentials by rural/urban, zonal and socio-economic indicators exist, warranting accelerated efforts and targeted interventions for high-risk groups.