When golfer Phil Mickelson called a two-stroke penalty on himself for improving his lie during the last round of the Greenbrier Classic in 2018, he confessed, “I just had a few bonehead moves today.” But he did rebound, winning the WGC-Mexico Championship in March of that year and Pebble Beach in 2019.

Most people who are penalized with two strokes don’t fare that well, at least when their strokes block blood flow to the brain. Eighty-seven percent of the more than 795,000 strokes suffered by Americans every year are in the brain (they’re called ischemic), and 185,000 of them are repeats.

Discovering a new way to prevent them is a significant breakthrough, especially when it’s as tasty a solution as that proposed in a study published in Neurology. It seems that among two groups of people followed for five and nine years those eating a vegetarian diet rich in nuts, veggies and soy reduced their risk of ischemic stroke by 74% and 60%, respectively.

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That’s on top of research that shows a vegetarian diet can reverse plaque buildup in your arteries and lead to a 32% lower risk of dying from a cardiovascular disease and 25% lower risk of dying from any cause compared with those who eat the least amount of plant-based foods.

Clearly, it’s time to consider reducing or eliminating your consumption of all meats if you want to protect your health and up your game on and off the golf course, bike trail or walking path.

Mehmet Oz, M.D., is host of “The Dr. Oz Show,” and Mike Roizen, M.D., is Chief Wellness Officer and Chair of Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into “The Dr. Oz Show” or visit www.sharecare.com.