What are Monosaccharides, Disaccharides, and Polysaccharides?

The carbohydrates are divided into three groups, according to the number of individual simple sugar units. 


The term monosaccharide is derived from the Greek word “monos” - single, and, “sacchar” - sugar, also known as a simple sugar. It is the simplest form of sugar and the most basic unit of carbohydrates that contain a single unit of sugar.

Monosaccharides are usually water-soluble, colourless, and crystalline solids.

Example- Glucose, Galactose, Fructose.


Disaccharides, also known as a double sugar is the sugar formed when two monosaccharides (simple sugars) are joined by glycosidic linkage. It contains two sugar units of sugar.

Disaccharides are also soluble in water.

Example- Sucrose, Maltose, Lactose.


Polysaccharides are the most abundant and complex carbohydrates found in food.

Its molecules consist of long-chain polymeric carbohydrates, composed of monosaccharide units bound together by glycosidic linkages.

Polysaccharides are used for storing energy, sending cellular messages, and provides support to cells and tissues.

Example- Starch, Cellulose, Glycogen.


Simply Easy Learning

Updated on: 10-Oct-2022


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