Thought for Food Blog

Cereals: Importance and Composition

Posted by Dave Howard

21-Jun-2012 11:44:00

Cereals are grasses and members of the monocotyledon, or monocot, family – one of two major groups of angiosperms (flowering plants) that are traditionally recognised, the other being dicotyledons, or dicots.

They are cultivated for the edible components of their grain (botanically, a type of fruit called a caryopsis), composed of the endosperm, germ, and bran. Cereal grains are grown in greater quantities and arguably provide more food energy worldwide than any other type of crop; they are therefore vital staple produce. The chemical composition of the cereals varies widely and depends on the environmental conditions, soil, variety and fertiliser.

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Topics: rice, cereals, protein, monosaccharides, grains, wheat, agriculture, amino acids, legumes, vitamins and minerals, carbohydrates

The Role of Monosaccharides

Posted by Dave Howard

26-Apr-2012 08:19:00

Carbohydrates can be classified as monosaccharides, oligosaccharides, and polysaccharides.

Monosaccharides are simple carbohydrates containing between three and eight carbon atoms, the most common having five or six. They consist of a single sugar molecule – mono meaning ‘one’ and saccharide ‘sugar’.

Monosaccharides are often classified by both their number of carbon atoms and their functional group. For example, an aldohexose is a monosaccharide that contains a total of six carbon atoms including that of an aldehyde in its structure. Similarly, a ketopentose has five carbon atoms in its structure including the one in the keto group.

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Topics: monosaccharides, honey, fruit, vegetables, sugar and substitutes, carbohydrates

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