Answer the following questions related to the case study (Sweet Truth: Not all Carbohydrates are Alike):
1.    In aqueous solutions, there are three forms of glucose: the cyclic alpha-form (36%), the cyclic beta-form (64%), and a trace amount of the open-chain form.  At equilibrium, the cyclic alpha- and beta-forms are constantly interchanging when in solution.  (1) Explain why the cyclic forms exist predominately in solutions, AND (2) explain why the cyclic beta-form is more abundant than the cyclic alpha-form. 
2.    Name the monosaccharides and disaccharides in amylose and cellulose.  Compare the structural and conformation differences between amylose and cellulose.  A simple iodine test can be used to distinguish the two polysaccharides. (1) Describe the iodine test AND (2) explain the observation.
3.    List AND explain the side effects that can be caused consuming too much sorbitol.
4.    Why are soluble fibers identified as prebiotics?

Page 1“Sweet Truth” by Chen, Wang & Anderson

Sweet Truth: Not All Carbohydrates Are Alike
Ling Chen, Science Department, Borough of Manhattan Community College / City University of New York
Diane R. Wang, Plant Breeding and Genetics, Cornell University
Jennifer Y. Anderson, Health Department, Brookdale Community College

Th is case study contrasts the structures of diff erent pairs of simple and complex carbohydrates: D- and L-glucose,
- and -D-glucose, lactose and sucrose, amylose and cellulose. Th e story also explains the similarity in symptoms
related to the gastrointestinal bacteria fermentation of lactose and soluble fi bers and compares the enzymes that are
responsible for the breakdown of lactose, amylase, and cellulose. Finally, the health benefi ts of consuming both soluble
and insoluble fi bers are discussed.

Mike and Jack are best friends. Th ey go to the same college, where they are roommates, and even share a few classes.
Th ey plan to see Professor Jaff y to review the math exam they took last week in hopes of digging out some extra points.

Mike: Jack, it’s Professor Jaff y’s offi ce hour. We should leave now before it gets too crowded; I don’t want to miss it
this time.

Jack: Ugh, I’m afraid I’m going to have to pass. I’m having a bloating
situation here. It would be too embarrassing if there were a gas

Mike: Are you kidding? I don’t want to go alone.

Jack: I’m serious. Feels like some explosive reactions are happening inside
of me. Probably too much fi ber from lunch, and I don’t want to be
a laughing stock.

Mike: What in the world did you have?

Jack: A super-sized salad, two bowls of bean soup, and something healthy
that I don’t even remember. I was so hungry I just wolfed them down.

Mike: Well then, I’ll go by myself. Do you have any questions for the

Jack: I guess. You can ask her why veggies and beans are gas producers…
just kidding! I know they both do wonders for our health. Who
would have thought they’d be such a pain in the butt!

Mike: I hear you. I just did a research paper on fi bers for my nutrition
class. Plant fi bers are benefi cial to humans with moderation. Your
bloating problem is because you increased your fi ber consumption
too fast.

Jack: Tell me about it.



Page 2“Sweet Truth” by Chen, Wang & Anderson

Mike: About one third of plant matter is made of cellulose, a
polysaccharide (complex carbohydrate) that consists of
several hundred to ten thousand glucose units. Glucose
is a monosaccharide, or simple carbohydrate, also known
as blood sugar. All glucose in cellulose is linked together
by -glycosidic bonds; therefore, such glucose is called
-glucose. However, the human digestive system lacks
cellulase, an enzyme, to cleave the linking bond. Because
of that humans can’t make use of the glucose in the fi bers.

Jack: But I know fo

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