Best Health With Diabetes - Understanding Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are natural substances in all plants and in all animals. A carbohydrate is an essential molecule of the living state.

A carbohydrate consists of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen. The actual word carbohydrate means hydrated carbon. Carbon atoms unite in rings or in chains, and oxygen and hydrogen link to the carbon atoms. The hydrogen and oxygen are united in a ratio of one oxygen and two hydrogen atoms, which is the exact ratio of water - H20.

The basic composition of carbohydrates is thus one carbon, two hydrogen, one oxygen - and carbon is hydrated - carbon is linked to the atoms of water. In fact, when a carbohydrate is digested and metabolized, carbon is released and water is released. In fact, when a carbohydrate is digested and metabolized, carbon is released and water is released.

Often, a carbohydrate is scientifically termed a saccharide. Saccharide and carbohydrate are synonyms for the same substances. Saccharide terminology confers more information, for nature includes monosaccharides, disaccharides, and polysaccharides - single sugars, double sugars, and starch. Glucose is a single sugar. Fructose is a single sugar. Sucrose is a double sugar. Lactose is a double sugar. Cellulose is a chain of multiple sugars. Starch is a chain of multiple sugars. Glycogen is a chain of multiple sugars.

Saccharide terminology confers more information, for nature includes monosaccharides, disaccharides, and polysaccharides - single sugars, double sugars, and starch. Glucose is a single sugar. Fructose is a single sugar. Sucrose is a double sugar. Lactose is a double sugar. Cellulose is a chain of multiple sugars. Starch is a chain of multiple sugars. Glycogen is a chain of multiple sugars.TempraMed

Carbohydrates are essential for life. Glucose is the essential energy molecule for life. It provides immediate energy. Sucrose exists in nature but cannot serve as an energy molecule until it is broken down to its two component sugars - glucose and fructose. Fructose exists in nature as a single sugar but it does not provide immediate energy for living organisms. Rather, it is converted into fat molecules once it is absorbed and transported to the liver. A small percent of fructose can feed the liver, but most eaten fructose converts into storage fat. Starch and glycogen serve as glucose storage chains and provide glucose only during periods of fasting. Starch and glycogen cannot be absorbed when eaten. These polysaccharide carbohydrates must first be broken down to their glucose components in the stomach and intestine, and then their glucose is absorbed.

Sucrose exists in nature but cannot serve as an energy molecule until it is broken down to its two component sugars - glucose and fructose. Fructose exists in nature as a single sugar but it does not provide immediate energy for living organisms. Rather, it is converted into fat molecules once it is absorbed and transported to the liver. A small percent of fructose can feed the liver, but most eaten fructose converts into storage fat. Starch and glycogen serve as glucose storage chains and provide glucose only during periods of fasting. Starch and glycogen cannot be absorbed when eaten. These polysaccharide carbohydrates must first be broken down to their glucose components in the stomach and intestine, and then their glucose is absorbed.

A small percent of fructose can feed the liver, but most eaten fructose converts into storage fat. Starch and glycogen serve as glucose storage chains and provide glucose only during periods of fasting. Starch and glycogen cannot be absorbed when eaten. These polysaccharide carbohydrates must first be broken down to their glucose components in the stomach and intestine, and then their glucose is absorbed.

As a food, carbohydrate refers to any food that is rich in glucose, fructose, and starch. Simple carbohydrates are sugar, juices, jams, jellies, candies, and syrups. Complex carbohydrates include pasta, breads, whole fruits, whole grains, and whole vegetables.

Simple carbohydrates metabolize to glucose rapidly and can cause a rapid surge in blood glucose. Complex carbohydrates metabolize to glucose more slowly and thus cause a much slower surge in blood glucose once eaten.

Personal knowledge of what foods are simple carbohydrates and what foods are complex carbohydrates is essential for the self care of one's diabetic condition.

 

Rex Mahnensmith,MD, is an Internal Medicine Physician who serves as a Primary Care Physician. He is especially interested in an individual's Best Health. He works diligently to help persons understand their Health and their Body's Functions. Diabetes is a special interest. He works diligently with persons and families to achieve better health through their own knowledge and thus changing their habits of eating and drinking. See more at http://www.Todaysbesthealth.info.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Rex_Mahnensmith/2250521

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1 comment

  • I am a Type 2 Diabetic with very good control and have found the key is Education and family support. I am actively seeking to expand on both elements in my journey with the disease.

    Thanks for listening

    Philip Lemmons

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