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Simple sugars

Simple sugars

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What type of sugar is glucose?

Simple sugars

Yummmmi, what a sweet and delicious apple. Oh, I can feel how the energy flows into my body. Yes, apples contain - glucose - which acts as a fuel for your body. Much like gasoline for cars - or electricity for an electric motor. When Jenny eats the apple, her stomach and intestines can quickly process the glucose - and distribute it to the whole body.

Glucose is not only in apples, but in all plants. But the highest amounts of glucose are found in sweet fruits, berries and grapes. Glucose is a simple sugar - distinguished from complex sugars like disaccharides: 'double sugars' which are combinations of more than one type. Simple sugars are also called: monosaccharides. Mono means one and saccharide comes from the Greek word for sugar.

There are several types of simple sugars. Another type is fructose: also found in plants. Or - galactose - which is found in milk. All these three simple sugars have six carbon atoms. The strange thing is that they also have the same chemical formula.

C-six H-twelve O-six What distinguishes them is the molecules arrangement. Fructose shapes itself into a pentagon. And glucose forms a hexagon. The galactose molecule also forms a hexagon, but some of the atoms are joined in a different way. Of these three, fructose tastes the sweetest, and is quickly absorbed by the body.

Glucose is also sweet, and quickly absorbed by the body. Galactose doesn't taste that sweet. It often joins with glucose to form a double sugar - lactose - which is normally found in milk. These three monosaccharides described here, all have six carbon atoms. But there are other monosaccharides with three, four, five, or seven carbon atoms.

Several of them play a role the metabolism of plants and animals. But those saccharides are not as common as glucose, fructose and galactose. Let's summarize: Simple sugars have between three and seven carbon atoms. The most common simple sugars are glucose, fructose and galactose. Simple sugars deliver energy quickly to your body.

And if you take in too much energy, the body stores the excess - as fat. What! You didn't say a word about that before. No, there's no need to avoid fruit. But it's not exactly healthy for you to consume lots of soft drinks, cakes, and sweets.

Your body works best when it receives energy at a steady pace. So eat things that take some time for your digestive system to convert into glucose. But this apple contains super fast sugar. Yes, but it only contains about ten grams of sugar. One glass of 'soda' or 'soft drink' usually has more than twice that much.

And, the sugar in your apple is bound up in fibers. So it takes longer for your body to absorb it. But sugar from soft drinks and cakes gets into your blood much faster. Then you soon start craving for more quick energy. More than your body needs.

Uh-huh! Nice!