myDr's top 10 health news stories of 2016

The myDr team has selected these 10 news stories as the top health headlines of 2016. Stories about diabetes continue to contribute more than their fair share of the news, but one good news story was the rollout of the new hepatitis C treatments, which are tabled to eradicate hepatitis C in Australia.

#1 - Exercise improves fatty liver

Even without any weight loss, exercising can improve the amount of fat in the liver of people with fatty liver. People exercising 3 times per week experienced a 16% reduction in liver fat, regardless of whether they lost any weight or not.

#2 - Zinc shortens the length of a cold

Taking zinc acetate lozenges can shorten the duration of a cold by 2-3 days, an analysis of 3 trials has found.

#3 - Healthy fats improve insulin resistance

Eating healthy fats, such as walnuts, soybeans, fish and flaxseed (linseeds), can improve insulin resistance if they replace saturated animal fats.


#4 - Pre-diabetes can be reversed by weight loss

Losing 11% of bodyweight in obese people can reverse pre-diabetes.


#5 - Shortage of diabetes medication metformin

Early in the year Australia faced a major shortage of the diabetes drug metformin.


#6 - Happy spouse improves your health

People with a happy spouse are much more likely to report better health, regardless of their own happiness.

#7 - Experts warn against HIV home tests

Vulnerable patients are being put at risk when purchasing online HIV self-testing kits because many tests lack any Australian pre- or post-test advice

#8 - Warmer weather brings white-tail spiders out to play

Spring weather increases the number of people searching for information about white-tail spider bites online.

#9 - Frequent ejaculation lowers prostate cancer risk

A large study shows that frequent ejaculation lowers the risk of prostate cancer.

#10 - 6 Things you should know about the new hepatitis treatments

A new generation of drugs becomes available that cures 9 out of 10 people with hepatitis C, and could potentially eradicate hepatitis C from Australia.