Carbohydrates and their Metabolism (Part 1)

Carbohydrates are mainly used as fuel, either in a direct manner, after storage as glycogen, or after conversion to lipids.


  • The main pathway for glucose metabolism in the presence of oxygen involves dismantling the sugars via glycolysis, extracting electrons from them by the enzymes of the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle, and using those electrons to produce ATP by the electron transport chain
  • Some dietary sugars are used to replenish supplies of glycogen, a polymer of glucose that is the main storage form of the sugar in the body, primarily in the liver and skeletal muscle
  • Once the energy needs of the body are met and glycogen stores have been replenished, remaining sugars are converted to fat, ie, triacylglycerol for storage, mainly in adipose tissue