Lab Tests Online - Explaining Pathology

Glossary

Carbohydrate


Any of a group of organic compounds (containing the elements carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen), including starches and sugars, that are the chief sources of energy for the body.

Carbohydrates from foods result in production of glucose, which is then either metabolised to release energy which can be stored as adenosine triphosphate (ATP), or stored as a large carbohydrate molecule, glycogen.

Carbohydrates are synthesised by green plants (through the process of photosynthesis), consumed by humans in the forms of cereals, flour products, fruits, and vegetables. After absorption in the intestine they are either used immediately or stored in the form of glycogen or fat.