Showing posts from 2024


Carbohydrates are one of the essential macronutrients in our diet, alongside fat and protein. They can be categorized into simple carbohydrates (sugars) and complex carbohydrates. This article focuses on simple carbohydrates, specifically monosaccharides and disaccharides, and explores their chemical composition and digestion process. Simple carbohydrates can be further classified into monosaccharides and disaccharides. Monosaccharides include glucose, fructose, and galactose, while disaccharides are composed of combinations of these monosaccharides. The disaccharides commonly found in our diet are maltose (two glucose molecules), sucrose (glucose linked to fructose), and lactose (glucose linked to galactose). Galactose is primarily present in our diet as part of lactose, found in milk and dairy products. Monosaccharides, due to their simple structure, can be directly absorbed into the bloodstream without the need for further digestion. However, disaccharides require hydrolysis, a proc

The basis of MINERALS

Hello, in this post, I would like to discuss the chemistry of minerals. From a chemical standpoint, dietary minerals are inorganic molecules that do not contain any carbon atoms. This sets them apart from vitamins, which are all organic molecules defined by the presence of carbon atoms.  Our food contains various minerals, some desired and others unwanted. But when does a mineral become a dietary mineral? The group of dietary minerals consists of chemical elements that are essential for the human body. In fact, a more suitable term for dietary minerals would be "dietary elements," although this phrase is not commonly used. Out of the 118 known chemical elements listed in the periodic table, only 21 are essential components of our diet. Once we exclude the four elements found in common organic molecules (carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, and oxygen), we are left with 17 chemical elements that make up the dietary minerals.  Based on their abundance in our body, dietary minerals are f

The history of VITAMINS (pt. 2)

The term "vitamin" was coined by Casimir Funk in 1912 when he isolated the anti-beriberi factor. It was a fancy name at the time and has endured, despite the realization that not all essential substances are amines (organic forms of nitrogen). Funk was not the sole researcher investigating these unknown substances we now know as vitamins. The early 1900s saw the expansion of research in animals, initially conducted by Eijkman and later by Grijns and Pekelharing, which laid the foundation for further exploration.  In England, between 1906 and 1912, Hopkins from Cambridge conducted experiments on rats and discovered that a diet consisting solely of pure protein, fat, and carbohydrates made the rats sick and resulted in their death. However, adding less than one-third of a teaspoon of milk per day to the purified diet proved to be life-saving for the rats, highlighting the presence of organic substances in milk.  In 1911, independently of the European studies, Hart and his colle

The history of VITAMINS (pt.1)

In this post, I would like to introduce you to the concept of vitamins. While you may already know that vitamins are important molecules, let's explore what they truly are. Chemically, vitamins are organic compounds composed of carbon atoms arranged in chains. Nutritionally, they are essential compounds needed in small quantities to support normal metabolism, growth, and overall well-being. Vitamins differ from macronutrients like protein, carbohydrates, and fats, as they are required in smaller amounts. Most vitamins are not produced in sufficient quantities by our bodies, which is why we need to obtain them through our diet. When our intake of vitamins is insufficient, it can lead to deficiencies and related health issues. Despite being present in minuscule quantities, vitamins are as crucial to our health as macronutrients. The discovery that vitamins are essential for a balanced diet was a groundbreaking scientific revelation that revolutionized our understanding of nutrition.