In India, one will find many girls and women wearing Bindi. The traditional Bindi has also become a fashion statement. But do you know that the Bindi can also help in saving your life? Shocked? It’s true! An NGO, Neelvasant Medical Foundation and Research Centre, teamed up with ad agency Grey Group Singapore to create ‘JeevanBindi’ or ‘Life Saving Dot’. So, how does this work? The team impregnated bindis with an iodine solution. The treated bindis act as transdermal patches, providing women with the 150 to 220 micrograms of iodine they require daily.
And the most beautiful part of the initiative is that it fits into an established cultural tradition. Ali Shabaz, chief creative officer of Grey Group Singapore, said:
“It’s hard to get [rural women] to make massive behavioural changes. But here, all they have to do is wear the same bindi that they wear every day. This program can easily be extended to reach a larger population of women in India who need this vital mineral for a healthier life.”
But is Iodine really essential for our body? Well, yes. Iodine deficiency amongst rural women is an acute problem in India. Due to low levels of iodine in the body, many women in rural India are at risk of brain damage, fibrocystic breast disease, breast cancer, and complications at birth.