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What is Sucrose?

By Jessica Reed
Updated May 16, 2024
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Sucrose is the proper term used to describe sugar. Two simple sugars, glucose and fructose, are combined to form the complex carbohydrate known as sucrose. The complex carbohydrate sucrose is also a disaccharide, a fancy term simply meaning a carbohydrate made up of two monosaccharides, which in this case are glucose and fructose. Regardless of what it's called, sucrose is used to sweeten foods and give the consumer an energy boost.

The human body breaks down carbohydrates for energy, which all people need to keep functioning. The body must break down these carbohydrates into glucose, also known as blood sugar. The body absorbs the glucose found in foods and converts the other carbohydrates into glucose. When the body breaks down the complex carbohydrate sucrose, found in many foods, it absorbs the glucose and metabolizes the fructose, which can then be stored in the body. Sugar creates a quick energy boost because it is easily and quickly absorbed into the blood stream.

There are two main types of sugar: brown and white. White sugar is created from sugar cane or sugar beets. It can consist of only very fine crystals, average sized crystals, or be packed together into sugar cubes. Fine crystals are best for cooking because they dissolve the fastest and are easy to stir. Sugar cubes and sugar with average sized crystals are typically used at the dinner table when sugar is needed to add to a drink or sprinkle over a dessert.

Brown sugar is simply white sugar with a very small amount of molasses added. The only difference is the brown coloring and that the brown sugar may feel more moist than white sugar. Brown sugar can be substituted in the place of white sugar when cooking. There is a form of brown sugar that differs slightly from white sugar which is known as natural brown sugar. It is made from raw sugar and naturally has a brown color, instead of getting its color from molasses.

Many have heard that sugar can lead to cavities in the teeth. While the sugar itself doesn't cause cavities, not brushing after eating sugar or other foods can. A child with cavities may be consuming a lot of sugar and not brushing his teeth on a regular basis. Other effects of sugar on the body are currently being studied. Though it is still under research, many studies are showing that sugar may not have a significant effect in how hyper children are as once was believed.

DelightedCooking is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

By anon320433 — On Feb 18, 2013

Sugar is bad news for humans. Many illnesses are caused through consumption of refined sugars. Cancer is one of the diseases that feeds on sugars.

By anon161702 — On Mar 21, 2011

Can you show a diagram indicating the electron configuration?

By Meir — On Jan 05, 2011

No! Sucrose is polar water soluble molecule. it will not pass through lipophilic (oily) skin.

By anon133785 — On Dec 12, 2010

if there is sucrose in liquid soap will that affect my glucose levels?

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