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Uncovering the TRUTH about Walden Farms

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Walden Farms BadThis article, Uncovering the Truth about Walden Farms is from 2010. A LONG time ago.

While I know many still wonder is Walden Farms bad for you, I understand that many use it and love it.

And that’s ok.

You’re allowed to love it and use it. I personally do not love it, have tried it since the original article several times and still can’t find much to love.

Please understand I am a food blogger and I make many of my own items including condiments and sauces, so for me – it’s simply not good.

UPDATE: Please when reading this, keep in mind that it is now almost 10 years old. It is also ONE persons opinion and review.

It is okay to have a differing opinion, but it is not necessary to be rude or nasty in a comment.

You don’t have to agree with how I feel or how anyone else feels.

For some, I am aware that it is all they can use.

I’m not close minded, I just don’t like the idea of making people think it’s a healthy option, when technically it isn’t.

That’s was the original point.

January 30, 2010

Dieters, Natural Eaters, Fitness and Health nuts usually get quite excited when a new company enters the land of healthy eating.

They are eager to try the new products and go to great lengths to find them sometimes.

Even sometimes when its an “older” company but nobody has ever really heard of them and all of a sudden people start talking about them, in the chaos ensues and people are frantically trying to find the products to taste-test them on their own.

That happened recently on a fitness board that I frequent.

Meet the company, Walden Farms.

It’s been around since 1972 and I have seen it in grocery stores and other places for the past couple of years.

With my goal for healthier eating, I was bound to come across it, because that’s just what they claim their products are for.

On a quick glance, the company looks impressive, amazing… almost a little too good to be true.

They boast:

No Calories, Fat, Carbs, Gluten or Sugar of any kind!

It’s right there on their website for the world to see. Those words are truly a dieters dream, as well as a diabetics dream!  

I mean, who doesn’t want to lose weight but still get to eat delicious foods at the same time. Especially when struggling with a disease.

No calories? Wow!  But is it too good to be true?

In one word, yes. 

But honestly I will let you be the judge of that.

From the company website:

Walden Farms irresistibly sweet calorie free specialties are prepared with real fruit extracts, concentrated natural flavors, rich cocoa and other natural ingredients, all sweetened with Splenda. Our savory specialties are made with hundreds of freshly ground herbs and spices, concentrated natural flavors and the finest aged imported and domestic vinegars.

The good news is, they wrote it right on their website.

Splenda.

Splenda is so darn bad for you.

I don’t even want to get into it you can google all about the horrors of Splenda.

Go ahead, its awful.

But it’s there and available and a lot of consumers use it and so do a lot of brands, putting it in their products which many people don’t read the ingredient list on.

I won’t lie, occasionally I do have something with Splenda in it – its in a lot of low cal, sugar free or no calorie products.

But the more I read on it, the more I really do not wish to consume the product at all, and I’m working on that.

But even if I overlook the fact that there is splenda in every single item they sell, there are other more problematic things to look at.

First they drag you in saying things like,

Save 330 calories a day, 10,000 calories a month and lose 34lbs a year!

That’s on their chocolate syrup they show dripping over a huge serving of vanilla ice cream.

I’m pretty sure that ice cream is going to counteract that chocolate syrup.

But if you eat everything in moderation as the old saying goes, you might be okay.

But you might not.

But again, this is not even as problematic as the ingredients in some of their products. 

I mean honestly, why would you want to eat a peanut “spread” that doesn’t even have peanuts in it?

It’s FLAVORED to taste just like natural peanut butter. FLAVORED.

You can literally purchase a good blender and blend peanuts and make your own.

Controlling how much sugar goes in if any, if that’s what you need to watch, etc. In fact, homemade peanut butter is incredible and an experience you should definitely try.

But peanut FLAVORED spread? Uhm.

No thanks, because I’m pretty sure the other stuff you put in there with it, is simply awful – check out this next one.

Their strawberry spread features “strawberry flavor”, “natural flavors”, and cellulose gel (also known as Cellulose Gum) (this sounds so amazingly disgusting just reading it made me feel sick!) in addition to the ever-present Splenda.

So what is cellulose gel?

As a whole, it’s not necessarily a bad thing, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration found no evidence that cellulose gum/gel is dangerous or hazardous and considers the additive generally safe.

Ok. That’s fine.

But did you know it’s indigestible?

We shouldn’t be putting things in our body that are not digestible. It’s just not a GOOD idea.

I guess it won’t kill you if that’s your thing.

Wouldn’t you rather just have real strawberry preserves?

The natural sugar in the REAL strawberry preserves might be higher, but its NATURAL sugar… not artificially concocted stuff.

Several of the products have maltodextrine, cellulose gel, several types of vegetable gums and one more little tidbit I learned along the way – only the suggested SERVING size contains no calories.

So if you use more, you’re getting some calories you might not realize were there!

And those serving sizes are often VERY tiny. Like as in, there’s no way you’d feel even close to satisfied or “full”. 

In addition, I did some research on the reviews of the companies products.

I found more negative reviews than I did positive (though there are some positive – they look a lot like the ones in the comment section below). 

However, the vast majority of the people said the food tastes “gross”, “inedible” “disgusting”, “tastes like battery acid”, “the texture is like eating paste” (and that was for marshmallow fluff) and a bunch more descriptions and adjectives – some not worthy to even be said on my site.

That in itself speaks volumes. Why would you want to spend your hard earned money on products that don’t taste good?

I mean, no offense but nothing I’ve tried has tasted even remotely like the real thing its pretending to be.

And most of it really is gross or has a weird aftertaste or the taste itself almost tastes like chemicals unless you mask or hide it in something.

There were a few compliments on some of the products, but for the most part, they seem to generally not taste good at all.

Good to know. I won’t be buying any. But if you do, I won’t judge you. I’m just passing along my research.

Hungry girl doesn’t even like it! Not that she’s not the be all end all of anything, but she is smart and she does her research.

And she TRIES it.

The saddest part about all of this, is that companies like Walden Farms give other good, solid, natural products a bad name.

Obviously you’ll do what you want, but this serves as a warning to what WF thinks is okay for us all to eat.

Yes, in some cases the products are cheaper than the natural stuff, BUT… shop around.

Look. It might be worth your health.

I’m still reeling from that disgusting description of strawberry spread!

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Deb

Sunday 7th of February 2021

Thank you for your article about Walden farms products! I read a good number of the comments here and your replies and my concern not only with this product having splenda and xanthan gum and other ingredients is an ingredient I stumbled upon about 5 years ago called CARAGEEN--which has been studied and found to cause stomach cancer--this ingredient can be found in many brands of almond milk that are on the market today--I won't name any brands but if you read the ingredient list on your almond milk it is likely there people because I found few almond milks without it. I am overweight and I need to lose weight but I refuse to eat nasty chemical ingredients that are going to cause me to have cancer or kidney problems or something else I would rather eat real whole foods or have no salad dressing and exercise more eat real peanut butter exercise more etc then eat crummy nasty disgusting chemicals--no judgment here--just my choice--my body I eat what I like & your body--you eat what you like--but I do not want to eat chemicals....... thank you and good luck to everyone!

Elaine Wencl McManigle

Wednesday 9th of September 2020

So glad I found this link! I just bought Walden Farms Coleslaw Dressing, I was so excited! But it tastes horrible: sharp and nasty! After reading this article, I'm not going eat any more of the coleslaw (cabbage mix) that I just wasted by adding this horrible dressing. I don't think it's the splenda, as I have eated article sweeteners for years - and I know what they taste like. Walden Farms Coleslaw Dressing tastes horrible. I will never try another Walden Farms product (I thought they were a good company). Because they put this dressing on the market, they don't care what garbage they sell.

Unknown

Monday 25th of November 2019

Although cellulose gum is not digestible, it just means you'll let it out when you potty. usually you shouldn't take in too much due to loose bowel movement. Some people actually use this to clean out. As far as splenda, no nutri sweet is ever really good. Equal which was used for a long long time contains aspartame derived from a byproduct of aluminum causes allergic reaction. and let's not get started on sweeten low.. Having said that. I would never use any of their alternative sweet food like chocolate syrup or the peanut butter spread. How ever I have used a lot of spice oriented dressing for my salads such as the honey mustard, sweet onion, and other non -dairy type dressings and found them to be actually quite good. Point being that if you are looking for a dairy o creamy alternative sad truth is you'll never find one that is very good. I've looked. I feel like this article was very demonizing. If you look at the ingredients of anything you get from the store you will find less than savory ingredients in every single one of them unless they are food from the ground, but even then what bug spray did they use on it? Did it get in the soil contaminating the product? Unless you grow and make your own food you'll have to deal with some sort of by product in it. So the people writing this may have not liked it but don't condemn them for doing something that every food packaging company does. Also be ever vigilant on extensive research.

Dylan

Friday 12th of July 2019

Just recently bought 2 bottles from Kroger's for $3.59 each. I was excited to see that this is free of calories, fat, cholesterol, carbs, gluten, and sugar. I'm about half-way done with the first bottle...and the taste is HORRIBLE!!!! I've stomaching it down because of the claims of being free of the bad stuff, but I can't...I just can't. I'm gonna look into making my own salad dressing from fruit, olive oil and apple cider vinegar.

L Dixon

Tuesday 14th of May 2019

I LOVE the Ranch Dressing & The Alfredo Sauce. I haven’t tried but a couple of others but I will stick to the two I Love.

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