Simple Sugars – Monosaccharides

Monosaccharide One Molecule Simple Sugar - Organic Chemistry

What are Monosaccharides?

Monosaccharides are known as simple sugars, they are the simplest form of carbohydrate. They are short chain molecules containing only one chemical ring. Since they are only one ring, they can undergo chemical reactions to provide quick release of energy.

Monosaccharide One Molecule Simple Sugar - Organic Chemistry

Facts about monosaccharide

  • Do not hydrolyze (bond with water) to yield other sugars
  • Cannot be broken down to simpler sugar
  • Constitute the building blocks of complex sugars
  • Monosaccharides can occur as chains or rings

Formula for monosaccharides

C – carbon
H – hydrgen
O – oxygen
n – number


Examples of monosaccharides

  • Fructose – found in honey & fruits
  • Glucose – found in corn syrup & glucose energy drinks
  • Galactose – found in milk & also some vegetables and fruits
  • Ribose – found in genetic material RNA



  • Glucose is a carbohydrate, a simple sugar and a monosaccharide
  • Glucose is one of the major products of photosynthesis
  • Glucose is also known as dextrose
  • It’s chemical formula is C6H12O6
  • In living things, inside cells of plants and blood of animals, glucose consist of molecules shaped into a ring
  • It is also referred to as “blood sugar”
  • The normal concentration is 0.1% in human bloodstream but in people with diabetes, the concentration is higher
  • When metabolized (burned to produce energy), it produces carbon dioxide, water and some nitrogen compounds
  • There is an oxygen atom forming part of the ring

Stick diagram of a glucose molecule

Glucose44 simple steps to draw a glucose molecule >>

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