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Cut back on bacon, wear bug spray and 5 other wellness tips to know this week

A man in a T-shirt sprays bug spray onto his forearm outdoors.
Why you should wear bug spray this season. (Getty Creative)

Hello, health news readers! My name is Kaitlin, and I’m here to share the best wellness tips from around the web. The holiday weekend may be coming to a close, but summer is in full swing — and so is the scorching weather. Stay cool and use the summer sun as an excuse to eat lots of watermelon and gazpacho!

Of course, before you venture outdoors, check the local weather forecast — and, if you’re a fan, your horoscope. Then read up on the tips below to see how you can improve your health and overall well-being this week.

🥓 Skip the bacon

Cutting back on processed meat — such as bacon, cold cuts and hot dogs — by just 30% may help prevent diabetes, colorectal cancer and even heart disease, a new study finds. Need a healthier swap for your BLT? Try a hummus and veggie wrap instead for an extra fiber boost, which most Americans really need.

👫 Build up your social circle

Chronic loneliness is an American epidemic, per the surgeon general — but now, new research says that it can also increase the risk of stroke by as much as 56%. Struggling to find social connections? Try volunteering in the community, chatting with neighbors or attending local events like art exhibits or educational workshops.

🦞 Eat lobster, live long?

Living into the triple digits is a rare feat — which is why 104-year-old lobster fisherwoman Virginia Oliver is sharing her tips on how to thrive. That includes abstaining from smoking and alcohol, enjoying time in nature and, of course, consuming lots of lobster — which happens to be a great source of zinc, selenium and vitamin B12.

🦟 Wear bug spray

Bummer bug news: Mosquito-borne illness is on the rise, with officials confirming some of these bugs have tested positive for West Nile. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has also warned people about the increase in dengue fever, which is spread by mosquitoes and endemic in places like Puerto Rico. Fight back by wearing bug spray and avoiding puddles of standing water, which can breed these annoying bloodsuckers.

Practice patience

Do you get frustrated easily? You’re not alone. While some people are lucky enough to be born patient, there’s good news if you’re not one of them: You can work on it. Oprah Daily has tips to become more patient — and yes, that includes limiting screen time. (Sorry!)

🍦 Hit up the ice-cream truck

I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream — which might actually be a better-for-you summertime treat than you thought, according to dietitians. They say it can be a better choice for blood sugar management than some other desserts on the menu.

😊 Lean into happiness

An Ivy League education in happiness? Yahoo Creator Sean Kernan enrolled in Yale University’s free eight-week happiness course, called The Science of Well-Being, and is sharing the top four things he learned — like savoring, which is deliberately thinking about an activity you just enjoyed and taking a moment to appreciate it.