21. Lipids and Carbohydrates   Previous PageNext Page

One reason why sucrose was slow to be accepted, aside from its scarcity, may be that sucrose is not as sweet to the taste as glucose and fructose. Acid or the enzyme invertase will catalyze the cleavage of the bond in sucrose, and the conversion of sucrose into an equimolar mixture of the two monomers.

This becomes important in the confectionary industry, which has developed a special jargon of its own. Because the mixture of glucose and fructose in solution rotates polarized light in the opposite direction to sucrose, cleavage of sucrose is termed "inversion," the enzyme is named "invertase," and the mixture of products is “invert sugar."

Glucose and fructose are called "dextrose" and "levulose" in the sugar industry because of the way they individually rotate polarized light. What sugar chemists do with special effort, bees do naturally.

Honey is already an “invert sugar" mixture of greater than average sweetness because the bees supply their own invertase enzyme along with the honey.

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