# Explain how carbohydrates are used by living organisms.

Jul 21, 2018

Carbohydrates are the primary energy source for most heterotrophic organisms.

#### Explanation:

Carbohydrates which include sugars and starches are the primary energy sources produced in plants and used by heterotrophic organisms.

Carbohydrates are composed of a basic chemical formula that typically contains a ratio of one Carbon atom for every two Hydrogen atoms and one Oxygen atom ${C}_{1} {H}_{2} {O}_{1}$. Basically one carbon atom for every one water molecule Carbon + Water = Carbohydrate.

Monosaccharides or Single Carbon Chain Sugars include Glucose ${C}_{6} {H}_{12} {O}_{6}$

Disaccharides or Double Carbon Chain Sugars include Sucrose ${C}_{12} {H}_{22} {O}_{11}$

Combining monosaccharides and disaccharides create Polysaccharides which are complex sugars called starches.

Jul 21, 2018