ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Carbohydrates - Simple Sugars

Updated on January 29, 2013

What Are Carbohydrates?

  • Carbohydrates are a group of organic compounds (including sugars, starch and cellulose) that contain hydrogen, carbon and oxygen.
  • The general formula for carbohydrates is Cn(H2O)n.
  • Carbohydrates make up about 10% of the organic matter of a cell.
  • Carbohydrates have a number of different functions; they act as an energy source (releasing glucose during respiration), they can also function as an energy store and provide structure for the cell (for example cellulose makes up plant cell walls).
  • Some carbohydrates will form parts of larger molecules, for example nucleic acid.
  • The number of carbon atoms is always the same as the number of oxygen atoms in a carbohydrate molecule.

Simple Sugars - Monosaccharides

The simplest carbohydrates are called monosaccharides which are the monomers of carbohydrates.

All of the larger carbohydrates are formed by the monosaccharides joining together (these are called disaccharides).

There are a number of different monosaccharides which contain between 3 and 6 carbon atoms.

The properties that these monosaccharides possess are all very similar.
The properties are:

  • They are all soluble in water.
  • They all form crystals.
  • They are all sweet tasting.

The different monosaccharides are grouped according to the amount of carbon atoms that the molecule contains.

  • When a monosaccharide molecule has 3 carbon atoms they are known as triose sugars.
  • When they have 5 carbon atoms they are known as pentose sugars.
  • When they have 6 carbon atoms they are known as hexose sugars.

Hexoses are the most common monosaccharide molecule, these include glucose and fructose.

Glucose and fructose molecules have the formula C6H12O6.

Glucose

  • Glucose can be drawn as a chain or a ring structure.
  • When the ring structure forms it can form in 2 different ways.
  • The H and the OH at carbon 1 of the ring can be above or below the plane of the ring.
  • The two different types of glucose are called alpha glucose and beta glucose.
  • In alpha glucose the OH at Carbon 1 is below the plane of the ring whereas in beta glucose it is above the plane of the ring.
  • The two different forms of glucose are isomers of each other.
  • The difference in structure leads to different properties.

Monosaccharides and Disaccharides

  • Two monosaccharide molecules can join together in a condensation reaction, this forms a disaccharide molecule.
  • The OH from one monosaccharide molecule and the H from the other monosaccharide molecule form H20 and is eliminated.
  • The bond formed between the disaccharide molecule is covalent and is called a glycosidic bond.
  • The reverse is when you add water to a disaccharide molecule and the glycosidic bond breaks down, this is called a hydrolysis reaction.
  • Lots of monosaccharide molecules can join to form polysaccharide molecules.

Two alpha-glucose molecules forming a disaccharide molecule.
Two alpha-glucose molecules forming a disaccharide molecule.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)