What Is Carbohydrate Monomer? 

Ekansh Agarwal

Updated on:

Hi, and welcome to this article on carbohydrate monomer. Today, we will learn what carbohydrates are, their purpose, and their fundamental building block elements, structure, and function. Before moving on to the monomer of a carbohydrate, know about carbohydrates first. So, carbohydrates are a type of macromolecule, they are essential groups of smaller molecules bonded together to carry out a specific function. Tally, there are four types of macromolecules and all four have distinct structural and functional properties that allow them to work together to carry out different cellular processes within the body. Now, let us know about the carbohydrate monomer

What Is Carbohydrate Monomer? 

A Carbohydrate monomer is called a monosaccharide, which is a single sugar monomer. Here, Mono means single, and Sacchar means sugar. Each Carbohydrate monomer unit is made up of chains of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen in the ratio, but they differ by ‘n’. Since ‘n’ is directly related to the number of carbon atoms, we can also say they are classified by the number of carbon atoms present. 

When someone asks you, which is a carbohydrate monomer? Glucose sucrose glucagon glycogen. Now, your answer will be Glucose, because glucose is a monosaccharide. Therefore, is glucose a carbohydrate monomer, it is a correct question. 

While talking about the carbohydrate monomer structure, it has the formula as (CH2O)n. Here the two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom are associated with the central carbon atom. A hydroxyl group is formed when oxygen will bond with hydrogen, and several carbon molecules bond together because four bonds can form on carbon. 

The Carbohydrate monomer name is monosaccharide but there are several monosaccharides. So, examples of carbohydrate monomers are Glucose, Fructose, and Galactose. 

Now, you have learned about what is the monomer of a carbohydrate

Also Read : What Is Lipid Monomer? 

Properties Of Carbohydrate Monomer 

The properties of carbohydrate monomer are, 

  • Carbohydrate monomers are easily soluble in water. 
  • They can not be broken down into simple forms of sugars. 
  • Carbohydrate monomers are reducing in nature. 
  • They show the phenomenon of stereo-isomerism. 
  • Monosaccharides are colorless and crystalline compounds. 
  • D-glucose and L-glucose are mirror images of each other. 

Let’s take a closer look at the structure and function of carbohydrates and see how they function.   

Also Read : What Is The Nucleotide Monomer? 

Carbohydrate Structure And Function 

While learning the carbohydrate structure and functions, we will learn about carbohydrate structure first and then its function. 

Carbohydrate Structure 

Carbohydrates are ‘’hydrates of carbon’’ and they have the generic structure of C(n)H(2n)O(n). A single unit is a monosaccharide, and such single units get attached to each other and form a long chain called carbohydrates. These can consist of 3-carbon moieties, 4-carbon units, 5-carbon moieties, and 6-carbon moieties. 

The chemical structure of carbohydrate polymers can be represented as a straight chain form and in cyclic form. In biological systems, glucose exists primarily in a cyclic form and very rarely in a straight form. Disaccharides are made up of two monosaccharides bonded together by a glycosidic bond, it is covalent bonding. 

Click here – What Is Lipid Monomer?

Fundamentally, carbohydrates consist of carbon, oxygen, and hydrogen. The general empirical structure of carbohydrates is (CH2O)n. They are organic compounds organized in the form of aldehyde or ketones with multiple hydroxyl groups coming off the carbon chain. 

Carbohydrate polymer examples are cellulose, starch, dextrin and cyclodextrins, chitin and chitosan, hyaluronic acid, and various gums.  

Carbohydrate Function 

Carbohydrates, also known as carbs, are important at every stage of life. While talking about the function of carbohydrates, they are the primary source of energy for the body and the preferred source of energy for the brain. The functions of carbohydrates include energy production, sparing protein, building macromolecules, energy storage, and assisting in lipid metabolism. 

They also govern the blood sugars and insults, provide energy, trigger hunger, and fullness, mood, digestion, brain functionality, and weight. 

Now, you can guess how important carbohydrates are for our bodies. 

Facts About Carbohydrate 

Here are some facts about carbohydrates, 

  • In our body, the brain is the only carbohydrate-dependent organ. 
  • Some animal products contain carbs 
  • The name carbohydrate itself tells you what it contains. 
  • Carbohydrates are the only energy source metabolized fast enough to support the hard exercise. 
  • Fiber is actually a carbohydrate technically. 
  • Food and drinks can have three types of carbohydrates namely starches, sugars, and fibers. 
  • Your body breaks carbohydrates into glucose, sugar, or blood sugar. 
  • Carbohydrate is the main source of energy for the body’s cells, tissues, and organs. 

Follow Monomerof to know more about various monomers.


How Are Monomers Formed In Carbohydrates?

Carbohydrates can also be made up of two monomers called disaccharides. Some examples are lactose, which makes milk sweet; sucrose, which is your regular table sugar; and maltose, which is a product of starch breakdown. Each of these disaccharides is made up of two other monosaccharides.

What Are Carbohydrate Monomers Used For?

Monomers of carbohydrates are simple sugars and the basic building blocks of carbohydrates, they are also known as monosaccharides and are used by the cells of living things to store and produce energy.

What Type Of Monomer Is Carbohydrate?


Monosaccharides. A monosaccharide is the monomer of a carbohydrate.

What Types Of Bonds Are Found Between Monomers Of Carbohydrates?

Carbohydrates are made up of monosaccharides linked together into polysaccharide chains by a type of covalent bond known as a glycosidic bond.

Click here – What Is The Nucleotide Monomer?

What Is Carbohydrates Monomer And Polymer?

The monomers of carbohydrates are the monosaccharide units that are the basic building blocks of all sugars and starches. The polymers of carbohydrates are disaccharides and polysaccharides that consist of two or more monomers respectively. Examples of monosaccharide are: glucose, fructose and galactose.

Why Are Carbohydrates Polymers?

The best explanation for why carbohydrates and proteins are classified as polymers is because they are made up of many similar small units, monomers.

What Are The 5 Monomers Of Carbohydrates?

Carbohydrate monomers are monosaccarides or simple sugars so glucose, fructose, galactose, lactose and maltose. Table sugar is a combination (disaccaride) of fructose and glucose, lactose and galactose are the sugars found in milk and and maltose is found in breads.


In this article, you have learned which is a carbohydrate monomer and also you know now the carbohydrate monomer example. Carbohydrate is a major component of plant tissue, making up to 60% to 90% of the dry matter. Carbohydrates contain carbon, oxygen, and hydrogen in the proportion found in water and are hence hydrates of carbon. They are basic energy sources in animal cells, and dietary carbohydrates obtained from plant-based products serve as a major source of energy for the animal. Now, you know everything about carbohydrates monomer


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