Characteristics of carbohydrates

  Carbohydrates along with protein and fat is main nutrient for organism. Its main function is to provide and store energy. It is an energy supplier for the whole body.  They can be of two types:

1. Simple carbohydrates which are simple sugar molecules (monosaccharides) and also two simple molecules (disaccharides). The key characteristics of this type is that they are absorbed quickly and we want to eat again very fast. Further, they consist mostly of sugar. Among them are sugar itself, bakery products, products made with refined flour, ice cream, sweets, fruit and fruit juices. All of them but for fruit and fruit juices are considered by dietologists as “zero” or “empty” callories foods. By this, it is meant that are high in calories but lack needed nutrients for good health.

2. Complex carbohydrates are those of more complex structure and have three forms: disaccharides, oligosaccharides and polysaccharides. They , in contrast to simple ones, are absorbed by organism slowly. They can be found in such products: whole grain cereals and their derivates  (bread, oatmeal etc), different kinds of beans and vegetables. They contain a large variety of vitamins and many of them are rich in fiber.  This type of carbohydrates is very needed for healthy functioning of the body.

  It also should be noted that even though fruits and fruit juice contain substantial amount of sugar, dietologists still suggest their consumption due to vitamins, minerals and fiber which can be found in them. However, it is often suggested to limit daily intake and it may be a good idea to choose fruit itself than concentrated juice which is often a combination of both juicy substance and added sugar.



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