Explain non-starch polysaccharides, Biology

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NON-STARCH POLYSACCHARIDES

A polysaccharide often termed as complex carbohydrate. Besides starch, a mixture of substances called non starch polysaccharide (NSP), also constitute carbohydrates.

Dietary fibre, a term familiar to all of us, is also known as non-starch polysaccharides (NSP). It is the name given to a group of materials found in the cell walls of plants which give the plant its structure and form. It includes those carbohydrates that are not digested or absorbed, but pass through to the colon where bacteria ferment them for energy, thereby stimulating their growth. Because the  term 'dietary fibre' describes a nutritional concept rather than a component of diet, it has been suggested that the term be phased out and replaced with the term 'NSP' but this has been difficult because the word fibre is so widely used.  Examples of NSP include cellulose, pectin, gums, beta-glucans etc. In this section we will learn about these different non-starch polysaccharides. The major polysaccharides in the plant cell wall are cellulose, carboxymethyl cellulose, hemicellulose and pectin. Let's learn about  them.

 


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