I have been around for 8000 years. They tell me that I arrived in India 6000 years ago. From then my story is interwoven, with the builders of different Empires. In 800 B.C, I was taken to China and then under Alexander the Great, I entered Europe. Cultivation of the crop there began in 700 A.D. In the course of these centuries, I have been medicine, a spice, a symbol of royalty, and many things to many people. I am Sugar.
Sugar, or sucrose, is a naturally occurring crystalline carbohydrate. Carbohydrates are the foundation of your food chain. It’s also the chief form in which plants store energy. The energy you get from eating carrots, broccoli, apples, bananas or potatoes comes from the carbohydrates the plant has stored in its roots, seeds, leaves, stems or fruit. Of all plant types, sugar cane and sugar beets make the greatest quantities of sugar, which is why they are the most efficient choices from which to extract sugar.
I am healthy! I contain just two molecules, bound together by Mother Nature: one molecule of glucose is bound to one molecule of fructose. Glucose, fructose and galactose are the three building blocks that make up all forms of carbohydrates. These three simple sugars are also known as monosaccharides. They bond with each other and themselves to make more complex carbohydrates. All carbohydrates are made up of one or more molecules of those simple sugars. No matter how complex carbohydrate is to start with, once in the body, all carbohydrates are broken down to these three simple sugars: glucose, fructose and galactose. Carbohydrates, along with fat and protein, are macronutrients that provide the body with energy because the majority of them contain glucose. Glucose is the fuel your brain, organs and muscles need to function and engage in everyday activities.
With India my association is an ancient one. The first refining of sugar can be found in an Indian text from 100 A.D. Later on, in the ‘Mahabhashya’ of Patanjali (400-350 A.D) mentions recipes calling for sugar they include rice pudding with milk, sweet barley meal, and fermented drinks with ginger.