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Is It Safe To Eat Shawarma During Pregnancy?

Pregnancy is the most precious stage in a mother's life. She thinks about her baby in every decision she makes - from what position to sleep in to what she eats. During pregnancy, it is common to have cravings for certain foods like shawarma in pregnancy. But is it safe to eat shawarma during pregnancy? Let's find out.

Table Of Content

Nutritional Value of Shawarma

Shawarma Recipe

Is Shawarma Safe During Pregnancy

Is Hummus Safe During Pregnancy


Nutritional Value of Shawarma

Shawarma is a snack which is famous in middle east. It is suggested by the doctors that shawarma during pregnancy should be avoided as it is rich in calories. The following table gives a brief idea about the contract of calories in shawarma.

nutritional value of shawarma

Shawarma Recipe

Although Shawarma is not advisable to eat during pregnancy, it is one of the famous middle eastern street food. It is basically layers of marinated meat, slow - roasted on a vertical rotisserie or spit.


- Cumin powder (¾ tbsp)

- Turmeric powder ( ¾ tbsp)

- Ground coriander (¾ tbsp)

- Garlic powder ( ¾ tbsp)

- Paprika (¾ tbsp)

- Ground cloves (½ tbsp)

- 8 boneless, skinless meat

- Onion (1)

- Lemon juice (1 cup)

- Private reserve extra reserve virgin olive oil (⅓ cup)

how to make shawarma


1. In a small bowl mix the cumin, turmeric, coriander, garlic powder, paprika and cloves. Set it aside for a while

2. Pat the meat thighs and dry and season with salt on both sides, then thinly slice into small bite-sized pieces

3. Place the meat in a large bowl. Add the shawarma spices and toss to coat. Add the onion, lemon juice and olive oil. Toss everything together again. Cover and refrigerate for 3 hours

4. When ready preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Take the meat out of the fridge and let it cool down to room temperature

5. Spread the marinated meat with the onion in one layer on a large lightly oiled baking sheet pan. Roast for 30 minutes in the preheated oven.

6. Now, take two slider buns, assemble the shawarma in it and serve it with sauce.

Shawarma might be an easy snack to grab on the go, but it is far from a healthy one. The marinated strips that are shaved off from the rotating cone of meat already have fat running through then and more likely than not, they will have been doused with yet more during the cooking process. The meat is also heavily seasoned, meaning that sodium levels are high. Slather the shawarma with traditional accompaniments and things only get worse in the health stake: hummus and garlic sauce are both high in calories, as are the french fries that is often nestled in the mix.

[Read: Spicy Food During Pregnancy: Is It Safe For You And The Baby?]

Is Shawarma Safe During Pregnancy

Pregnancy is the most unexceptional moment in a women's life. It is that moment when everybody is extra careful about the expecting mother especially when it comes to food. The food consumed by the mother can directly affect the health of the child. Is it safe to eat Shawarma is a common question asked by all pregnant women, the answer is no because doctors say that shawarma is not very safe to have during pregnancy as the content of saturated fats is very high which increases the cholesterol level in blood and thicken arteries.

eating shawarma during pregnancy

There are many reasons due to which doctors advice not to have shawarma during pregnancy, here are some of them.

Food poisoning

As Shawarma is a street food, it is likely to contain harmful bacteria and germs responsible for foodborne infections. Thus it is not advisable not to have it.

Risk of cancer

Consuming a diet that is high in animal protein and low on fruits and vegetables increases the possibility of cancer, therefore doctors advice expecting mothers not to consume Shawarma.

Water borne diseases

You never know what kind of water is used when making street food. The water may be contaminated.

Is Hummus Safe During Pregnancy

hummus during pregnancy

It is usually said that it is safe to have hummus as it is made primarily of chickpeas and tahini, which is a paste made from sesame seeds. Those ingredients, plus the lemon and other seasonings that are traditionally used in hummus, generally post no safety risk to an expecting mother or her baby. Because hummus is loaded with protein, fibre, calcium, iron vitamins and folate, it packs a major nutritional punch that benefits that both the mother and the growing baby. Here are some benefits of hummus.

Fights inflammation

Inflammation is the body's way to help itself from infection, illness, or injury. However sometimes inflammation can persist longer than necessary, this is called chronic inflammation and it has been linked to many serious health problems. Hummus is packed with healthy ingredients which help combat chronic inflammation

Control blood sugar levels

Hummus has several properties that help control your blood sugar levels. Since hummus is made from chickpeas, which have a low glycemic index, this is a scale that measures the ability of foods to control blood sugar.

shawarma during pregnancy

Reduces heart disease risk

Heart disease is responsible for 1 in every 4 deaths worldwide. Hummus contains several ingredients that helps reduce risk factors for heart disease.

Maintain a healthy body weight

Hummus affects weight loss and maintenance because of the main component, chickpeas.


As Shawarma is a type of street food, therefore it is not advisable for pregnant women to consume Shawarma as pregnancy is a time period in which a woman's body needs additional nutrients and loads of calcium, proteins and iron. Hence it can be concluded that Shawarma is not safe to eat during pregnancy.

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