myDr's top 10 health news stories of 2018

These are the top 10 news stories brought to you by in 2018. News about sleep took out the top 3 places, adding weight to reports earlier this year that found that Australians just don't get enough sleep.  Other recurring themes among the most popular news stories were anxiety and depression.

#1 - Being a night owl no good for you

Morning larks, night owls … turns out whether or not you’re an early-riser can have implications for your health.

#2 - Daytime sleepiness a risk factor for Alzheimer's disease

Do you find yourself falling asleep during the day, even when you try not to? It may be linked to a heightened risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

#3 - Video: Waking up to sleep deprivation

Many Australians accept sleep deprivation as a part of life, relying on stimulants like caffeine to get them through the day. But sleep deprivation causes adverse physical effects, such as high blood pressure, heart disease and obesity.

#4 - Video: Meningococcal disease warning

Meningococcal disease has been responsible for 2 deaths on the NSW Central Coast in the last 2 months, and 9 people have died in Australia in the past 2 years. Be aware of the symptoms and risks, experts warn.

#5 - Video: Blood clots - reducing the risk

Every year 30,000 Australians develop blood clots in their legs or lungs and 5000 of them will die. Many blood clots happen during or after a hospital stay and new hospital standards are aimed at reducing this risk.

#6 - Vitamin supplements may do more harm than good

A review looking at the health effects of vitamin and mineral supplements concludes that they give no consistent health benefit with even some evidence for harm.

#7 - Video: Depressed and anxious - Australian women

Female, anxious and depressed? You're not alone. Most Australian women feel anxious on a daily basis, and many have been diagnosed with depression.

#8 - Video: Opioid overdose

Opioids are morphine-like drugs used to treat pain, and include medicines such as codeine, fentanyl and oxycodone. They aren't effective for treating chronic pain and are potentially dangerous. 

#9 - Organic food - is it healthier?

Organic food is promoted as being healthier than conventional produce. Aside from the price, however, there is not a lot separating conventional and organic foods.

#10 - Eat healthy, live longer

Researchers study the association between dietary changes and longevity. How much benefit could a person get by changing their diet?