What is a Carbohydrate?
Carbohydrate is defined as the Polyhydroxy Aldehydes or Polyhydroxy Ketones or
Carbohydrates are the structural components of the living cells and a source of energy for the animals. Carbohydrates can be classified into 3 types depending on its chemical structure as: -
(a) Monosaccharides which are simplest carbohydrates and cannot be hydrolyse into further simpler compounds. E.g. include glucose, fructose and galactose.
(b) Oligosaccharides which are carbohydrates and can be hydrolyzed into 2 to 10 monosaccharide. E.g. include lactose, maltose and sucrose.
(c) Polysaccharides which are complex carbohydrates and can be hydrolyzed into more than 10 monosaccharide units. E.g. include starch, glycogen and cellulose.
Carbohydrates produce energy on oxidation during the process of respiration and yield more energy as compared to proteins and fats. Most of the carbohydrates absorbed by the blood stream are present in the form of glucose. One must always consume carbohydrates in proper amount otherwise he/she may suffer from a wide range of diseases.