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a compound of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen, the latter two usually in the proportions of water (CH2O)n. They are classified into mono-, di-, tri-, poly-, and heterosaccharides. Carbohydrates in food are an important and immediate source of energy for the body; 1 g of carbohydrate yields 4 calories. They are present, at least in small quantities, in most foods, but the chief sources are the sugars and starches. Food substances that are almost pure sugar include granulated sugar, maple sugar, honey, and molasses. The monosaccharides (simple sugars) include glucose and fructose. galactose, another simple sugar, is produced by the digestion or hydrolysis of lactose. The disaccharides (double sugars) include sucrose (white sugar, found in sugar cane or sugar beets), maltose, and lactose. All ripe fruits and many vegetables contain natural sugars. The starches are present in such foods as rice, wheat, and potatoes. Carbohydrates may be stored in the body as glycogen for future use. If they are eaten in excessive amounts, however, the body changes them into fats and stores them in that form.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.


1. Any of a group of organic compounds, including sugars, starches, celluloses, and gums, that contain only carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen and that originate chiefly as products of photosynthesis. Carbohydrates serve as a major energy source for living things.
2. A food, such as bread, rice, or potatoes, that is composed largely of these substances.
The American Heritage® Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2007, 2004 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.


Aldehyde or ketone derivatives of a polyhydric—especially pentahydric and hexahydric—alcohol. The name derives from ratio of hydrogen and oxygen-Cn(H2O)n; the major carbohydrates are starches, sugars, celluloses and gums, which are classified into monosaccharides (e.g., glucose), disaccharides (e.g., sucrose), trisaccharides (e.g., raffinose) and polysaccharides (e.g., starch, cellulose and glycogen).

An abundant organic compound, it is one of the three main classes of foods and a principal source of energy. Ingested carbohydrates are sugars and starches, which are metabolised into glucose or assembled into glycogen and stored in the liver and muscle for future use.
Segen's Medical Dictionary. © 2012 Farlex, Inc. All rights reserved.


Nutrition An abundant organic compound, which is one of the 3 main classes of foods and a principal source of energy; ingested carbohydrates are sugars and starches, which are metabolized into glucose, or assembled into glycogen, and stored in the liver and muscle for future use. See Complex. Cf Fats, Protein.
McGraw-Hill Concise Dictionary of Modern Medicine. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


Organic compound of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen; sugars are simple carbohydrates, starches are complex carbohydrates.
Medical Dictionary for the Health Professions and Nursing © Farlex 2012
Carbohydrateclick for a larger image
Fig. 89 Carbohydrate . The types of carbohydrate.


a family of organic molecules (hydrates of carbon) with the general formula (CH2 O)x, ranging from simple sugars such as glucose and fructose to complex molecules such as starch and cellulose. All complex carbohydrates are built up from simple units called MONOSACCHARIDES which cannot be hydrolysed to a simpler structure.

The types of carbohydrate are described in detail under their own heading, but are summarized in Fig. 89.

Collins Dictionary of Biology, 3rd ed. © W. G. Hale, V. A. Saunders, J. P. Margham 2005

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The report issued on WiseGuyReports, concerning the Low Carbohydrate Nutrition Bars market states every actionable force disrupting the Low Carbohydrate Nutrition Bars market growth.
They agreed that by focusing on diet quality -- replacing saturated or trans fats with unsaturated fats and replacing refined carbohydrates with whole grains and nonstarchy vegetables -- most people can maintain good health within a broad range of fat-to-carbohydrate ratios.
'Fad diets often lead people to fear carbohydrates. But the research continues to show that healthy carbohydrates - from fruits, vegetables, beans, and whole grains - are the healthiest fuel for our bodies,' said lead author Hana Kahleova, Director at the organisation.
DIETS that replace carbohydrates with protein or fat should be avoided due to a possible link with shortened life spans, scientists warn.
For inclusion the child should be diagnosed with T1D at least 6 months before recruitment to the study (in order for the parents to familiarize with carbohydrate counting and for the treatment to be optimized) and treated with multiple daily injections of insulin and use carbohydrate counting in meal planning.
Table-1: Equations for advanced carbohydrate counting.4-8
Researchers, who examined about 135,000 people from 18 different countries and across five continents, claim that moderate consumption of fat, fruits and vegetables alongside passing on foods higher in carbohydrates will lower the risk of mortality. The study participants' average diet consisted of 61 percent carbohydrates, 23 percent fat and 15 percent protein.
The present study aimed to determine if a superior performance is attained when a multiple carbohydrate drink is ingested.
No single, widely-accepted definition of a low carbohydrate diet exists.
"Sweet potato is a great source of carbohydrate for an evening meal as it is full of other important nutrients as well.

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