What does any of this have to do with fermented foods?
The answer should be obvious now: you are what you eat when it comes to bacteria. Probiotics ("good" bacteria) play a huge role in your overall health -- a healthy balance of bacteria is essential for maintaining a healthy stomach and solid, reliable bowel movements.
Fermented foods have probiotics in spades. Also, they're delicious. "Lactobacillus is used in a wide variety of products, including yogurt, sauerkraut, cheese, pickles, cocoa, tempeh, and even beer," says Julie Nieto, a registered dietitian at Ochsner Fitness Center. When you eat these foods, it helps populate your microbiome with friendly bacteria, which helps maintain all the above potential negative effects of a crappy microbiome. In other words, pass the tempeh dog, pickles, sauerkraut, and beer, bitte. They're good for you!