Nutritional Facts of Falafel, Lebanese Falafel Stuffed in Pita Bread, Calories in Falafel, Lebanese Falafel Stuffed in Pita Bread

by Tarla Dalal
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How many calories does one Lebanese Falafel Stuffed in Pita Bread have?

One Lebanese Falafel Stuffed in Pita Bread gives 238 calories. Out of which carbohydrates comprise 123 calories, proteins account for 28 calories and remaining calories come from fat which is 80 calories.  One Lebanese Falafel Stuffed in Pita Bread provides about 12 percent of the total daily calorie requirement of a standard adult diet of 2,000 calories.

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Falafel is a middle eastern deep fried snack (Lebanesesnack). It is an Arab food. falafel are great source of protein as they are made with kabuli chana. Falafels are usually fried but if you are looking for healthier option you can also bake them!

Falafel bullets are made with soaked overnight and drained kabuli chana (white chick peas), garlic (lehsun) ,onions, parsley, coriander (dhania), mint leaves (phudina) and cumin seeds (jeera) powder all ground together in a food processer. And the mixture is then taken out in a bowl and green chilli paste + baking powder are added to it and mixed together. Small balls are equally shaped out of the mixture and fried.

Further to make Lebanese falafel stuffed in pita bread we have made a dip using curd, garlic, spring onion and sugar.

Then the unleavened pita bread is lined with tongue-tickling garlic chutney, topped with a tangy curd dressing and packed with scrumptious deep-fried Lebanese falafel ‘bullets’ made of a kabuli chana batter.

I would like to share some important tips to make the perfect falafel recipe. 1. Mix well and our falafel bullet mixture is ready. If making falafel for the first time and you are afraid of the falafel disintegrating, then add 1-2 tbsp of refined flour for binding. 2. You can make the tahini dip in advance and store in the fridge.

This Middle-Eastern falafel is quite filling, and looks and tastes exotic as well, so you can serve it with tea or at a party too.

Serve the Falafel as soon as you assemble it, because it will get soggy if you let it soak in the dressing for too long.

Is Lebanese Falafel Stuffed in Pita Bread healthy?

Yes, this is healthy BUT you need to make some changes as explained below. 

Let's understand the Ingredients.

What's good.

1. Whole Wheat flour : The pita bread is made from  Whole wheat flour , which is excellent for diabetics as they will not shoot up your blood sugar levels as they are a low GI food.  Whole wheat flour is rich in Phosphorus which is a major mineral which works closely with calcium to build our bones. Vitamin B9 helps your body to produce and maintain new cells, especially increase red blood cells. See detailed 11 benefits of whole wheat flour and why it's good for you.

2. Onions (pyaz, kanda) :  Raw onions are a very valuable source of vitamin C – the immune building vitamin. Along with other phytonutrients from onions, it helps to build WBC (white blood cells) which serves as a line of defence against illness. Yes, it’s a source of many antioxidants, the most important one amongst them being Quercetin. The quercetin which promotes production of HDL (good cholesterol) and lowers total cholesterol in the body. The sulphur in onions act as a blood thinner and prevents blood clotting too. This in turn would lower blood pressure and good for heart diabetics. Read the benefits of onions

3. Curd + Low fat Curds :  Curds help in digestion as it has very good bacteria. Probiotics in curds acts as a mild laxative but, in case of diarrhoea and dysentery, it is a boon, if curd is used with rice.They help in weight reduction, good for your heart and build immunity. The only difference between curds and low fat curds is the fat level. Read the benefits of curds to include in your daily diet. 

4. Spring Onions : The sulfur compounds in spring onions are known to keep blood pressure under check. Here the sulfur compounds and antioxidant quercetin together help to keep blood sugar levels under control by increasing the production of insulin making it good for DiabeticsSpring onions have also been identified to lower cholesterol levels in the body. The vitamin C also puts you at less risk of heart disease. Being very low in calories and fat and encompassing a basketful of nutrients, they are looked upon as a weight loss vegetable too. See detailed benefits of spring onions

5. Sesame Seeds (Til) : These tiny white seeds are indeed a good source of protein. Half of daily requirement of calcium is fulfilled by consuming ½ cup of sesame seeds. Sesame seeds are a storehouse of ironfolic acid and help to prevent iron deficiency  anaemia and boost your energy. The lignans, a type of polyphenol, present in seed does wonders to naturally reduce cholesterol levels. See detailed benefits of sesame seeds

6. Kabuli Chana ( white chick peas) Kabuli Chana which is used in popularly in Chole in India is a complex cab which prevents surges in blood sugar levels and good for diabetics. Chickpeas are high in Fibre resulting in your stomach feeling a lot fuller than refined carbs. One cup of cooked chickpeas has 14 grams of protein, which is a really good amount. See here for 10 fabolous benefits of chickpeas

7. Garlic : Garlic has been proven to lower cholesterol. The active ingredient allicin present in garlic aids in lowering blood pressure. Garlic is also alleged to help regulate blood glucose levels for diabetics. Garlic is great for the heart and circulatory system. Garlic has an antimicrobial, antiviral and antifungal function and can help in relieving common cold and other viral infections. To boost your immune system have a garlic clove a day. Garlic is a top anti viral food. The thiosulphate compound, Allicin found in garlic acts as a strong antioxidant and protects our body from damage of free radicals.  Read here for complete benefits of garlic

8. Parsley : Parsley is a fairly good source of calcium, which is definitely known to support bone strength. Adding parsley to you meals daily will help you build your red blood cells count and haemoglobin levels and overcome anaemia. A glass of parsley juice is a very good detox to flush out toxins from your body and fight kidney stones. A cup of freshly chopped parsley fulfils your days requirement of vitamin C and vitamin K and folate. Parsley is part of  Heart-friendly foods. See detailed benefits of parsley.

9. Coriander (kothmir, dhania) : Coriander is a fresh herb often used as a flavour enhancer in Indian cooking. It is mainly used as a garnish. This is the best way to use it - no cooking. This preserves its vitamin C content which helps to build our immunity and bring that sparkle to the skin. The antioxidants vitamin Avitamin C and the quercetin present in coriander works towards strengthening our immune system. Coriander is a fairly good source of iron and folate – the 2 nutrient which help in the production and maintenance of red blood cells in our blood. Good for reducing cholesterol and good for diabetics. Read 9 benefits of coriander to understand details. 

10. Mint Leaves (Pudina) : Mint (pudina) being an anti-inflammatory reduces the inflammation in the stomach and shows a cleansing effect. Sipping on a healthy drink like fresh mint and lemon tea is the best option to overcome nausea for mums-to-be. Moreover it's vitamin A (10% of RDA) and vitamin C (20.25%) serve as an additional boost to bring relief from cough, sore throat and also cold. Mint (pudina) is a leafy vegetable which is sure to create nourishing dishes without piling on calories, carbs or fat for that instance. What is has to offer instead is FIBER. See here for detailed benefits of mint leaves

11. Tomatoes : Tomatoes are extremely rich source of Lycopene. Tomatoes are a powerful antioxidant, super rich in Vitamin C, good for heart. Tomatoes are a Pregnant women's friend and are rich in Folate or Folic Acid which helps your body to produce and maintain new cells, especially red blood cells. Read about 13 amazing benefits of tomatoes.   

12. Butter : Butter contains 80% fats and it comprises of many types of fatty acids. Butter has short chain fatty acids and medium chain fatty acids which are broken down and absorbed into the body directly and go straight to the liver and get converted to fuel to be used by the muscles. Due to this anti-inflammatory effect, it is said to have a positive effect in treating Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). Recent research shows that small amounts of butter has positive effects on heart health. So diabetics too can have small quantity of butter and balance it with other types of fats they consume. A tbsp. of butter fulfils 8% of your days requirement of vitamin A. This Vitamin A is a powerful antioxidant which is essential for glowing skin health and immune function. We suggest you read about butter the super food

What's the problem?

1. Deep fried foods : This falalfel is deep fried. Any food that is deep fried is not suitable for healthy living. Your fat levels increase as deep frying increases oil absorption. Also when you use the same oil again for deep frying then smoking point decreases which leads to the development of blue smoke which is not good for health. It also increases inflammation in the body and shuts down the fat burning process.

Can diabetics, heart patients and over weight individuals have Lebanese Falafel Stuffed in Pita Bread  ?

Yes, this recipe is good for diabetics, heart and weight loss BUT you need to make some changes. Don't deep fry the falafel but make a tikki out of it with olive oil. Then we have the pita pockets made with whole wheat so that is healthy. Replace full fat curd with low fat curd in the recipe. Your tahini dip is made with sesame seeds which is healthy. Eat this recipe in moderation as its a meal by itself.

Can healthy individuals have Lebanese Falafel Stuffed in Pita Bread?

Yes, but don't deep fry the falafel but make a tikki out of it with olive oil. 

Lebanese Falafel Stuffed in Pita Bread is high in

1. Vitamin C :  Vitamin C is a great defence against coughs and colds.

2. Calcium : Calcium  is a mineral that makes bones stay strong. Required from kids to adults.

3. Vitamin B1 : Vitamin B1 protects nerves, helps in carbohydrate metabolism, prevents heart diseases and helps produce red blood cells. 

Note : a recipe is deemed high in a Vitamin or mineral if it meets 20% and above the recommended daily allowance based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

How to burn 238 calories that come from Lebanese Falafel Stuffed in Pita Bread?

Walking (6 kmph) = 1 hr 11 mins

Running (11 kmph) = 24 mins

Cycling (30 kmph) = 32 mins       

Swimming (2 kmph) = 41 mins

Note: These values are approximate and calorie burning differs in each individual.

Value per falafel% Daily Values
Energy238 cal12%
Protein7.1 g13%
Carbohydrates30.7 g10%
Fiber4 g16%
Fat8.9 g13%
Cholesterol5.3 mg1%
VITAMINS
Vitamin A249.5 mcg5%
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)0.2 mg20%
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)0.1 mg9%
Vitamin B3 (Niacin)1.7 mg14%
Vitamin C16 mg40%
Vitamin E
Folic Acid (Vitamin B9)34.6 mcg17%
MINERALS
Calcium147.3 mg25%
Iron2.3 mg11%
Magnesium0 mg0%
Phosphorus0 mg0%
Sodium16.6 mg1%
Potassium213.1 mg5%
Zinc1.1 mg11%
Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
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