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Carbohydrates

Donna Matrix
Biochemistry / Dietetics / Behavior
Analysis / Nutrition Education

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Atoms and their bonds

H—
—O— |
—C—
—N— |
|
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4+1 Carbohydrates of interest
1. Sugars Which are in plants?
2. Starches
3. Fiber Which are in animals?
4. Glycogen
5. Saccharide
derivatives

*Simple / Complex*
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Sugars
• Monosaccharides – single sugars
Glucose / Fructose / Galactose
6C 5C 6C

• Disaccharides – pairs of single sugars


Maltose / Sucrose / Lactose (2 enzymes)
Glu-Glu / Glu-Fru / Glu-Gal
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Polysaccharides
Polysaccharides are strings of
monosaccharides, mainly glucose. There are
three of concern.
• Starch
• Fiber
• Glycogen

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Starches
Plant make starches.

• Branched chains of glucose


(amylopectin)
2. Unbranched chains of glucose
(amylose)

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Glycogen
Highly branched chains of glucose that
animals make and store.
Liver: ~100g Muscles: ~300g

Not a significant food source of carbohydrate.

Easy to make, easy to breakdown.


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Fiber
Most fibers are polysaccharides (cellulose /
hemicelluloses / pectins / gums / mucilages)

The bonds in fiber is different than starch and


the human body can not make the enzyme
to digest or break apart the fiber, so it stays
intact through the digestive tract and the
glucose in fiber can not be absorbed.

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Fiber
Bacteria in the GI tract can break down some
fibers.

Non-polysaccharide fibers: lignins, cutins, and


tannins.

Main classification: Soluble / Insoluble (H2O)


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Soluble Fibers
Gums / Pectins / some Hemicelluloses /
Mucilages

Sources: Fruits (apples and citrus) / Oats /


Barley / Legumes

GI: delays transit & glucose absorption /


lowers blood cholesterol
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Insoluble Fibers
Cellulose / many Hemicelluloses / Lignins

Sources: Wheat bran / Corn bran / Wholegrain


products / Vegetables (cabbages, carrots,
brussels sprouts)

GI: speeds up transit / increases fecal weight /


slows hydrolysis / delays glucose absorption
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Saccharide derivatives
The eight saccharide and saccharide
derivatives the human biochemistry uses
are: Glucose, Galactose, Mannose, Fucose,
Neuraminic N-acetyl acid (NeuNAc), N-
acetyl Glucosamine, N-acetyl
Galactosamine, and Xylose.

Lear more: Longevity Institute webpage


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Saccharides
These eight compounds are used in cell and organ
structure, in cell communication, and in immunity.
Human biochemistry can synthesize glucose from
lactate and from pyruvate and convert saccharides
into seven of the eight saccharides and saccharide
derivatives with the assistance of B vitamins and
with minerals, as magnesium, manganese,
selenium, iron, and zinc acting as enzyme
activators.
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Saccharides in Body
Saccharides participate in cell and organ structure in
association with proteins. Saccharides account for
5% of the mass of a cell membrane. The most
frequent saccharide in cell and organ structure is
N-acetyl glucosamine, followed by N-acetyl
galactosamine. These two are absent in our current
diet and therefore have to be synthesized from the
saccharides provided in the diet. Eating them
would be much less expensive for our
biochemistry than synthesizing it.
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Glucose in the Body
• Storage / Release
– Glycogen
– Triglycerides
• Fuel
• Gluconeogenesis (glucose from protein)
• Ketone Bodies (from fat fragments)

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Blood Glucose
Maintenance of range: food / glycogen (liver)
/ gluconeogenesis (from protein)
Hormonal release:
Insulin – blood glucose is high => cells
Glucagon – blood glucose is low => glucose
from liver is released\
Adrenaline (epinephrine) - /\ glucose
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Diabetes
Type 1 – pancreas fails to make insulin
Type 2 – cells fail to respond to insulin

Hypoglycemia – rapid lowering of blood


glucose (symptoms similar to anxiety
attack)

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Glycemic Index
The way the body reacts to sugar intake.

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End of Carbohydrates

Donna Matrix

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