Functional Groups Of Lipids | 5 Important Points

Functional Groups Of Lipids | 5 Important Points

Functional Groups of Lipids

Functional groups of lipids are groups of lipid molecules that perform specific biological functions. Lipid groups include glycerolipids, phospholipids, sphingolipids, sterols, prenol lipids, terpenoids, and prenol ethers. Lipids are an essential component of biological membranes and can also be found in various bodily fluids. The basic structure of lipids is a fatty acid attached to a molecule called glycerol, which may be linked to a polar head group.

Lipid groups are classified by the arrangement and number of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen atoms in their backbone structures. The most commonly encountered lipid groups are listed below:

1. Lipids with Hydrophobic Groups

The lipids are the essential components of the human body, and they play a vital role in maintaining the normal function of the human body. In this blog, I will be talking about lipids that have hydrophobic groups.

These lipids are used in making different types of oils, fats, and waxes. They also play an essential role in the food processing industry. They have many applications in various fields.

Lipids with hydrophobic groups are classified into two categories:
1) Fatty acids and
2) Sterols and triterpenoids.

Fatty acids are essential components of the human body and are the primary energy source. Saturated fatty acids are responsible for maintaining the human body’s regular metabolism and are required to grow new cells.
They are the precursors of hormones and cholesterol.
Here are some examples of fatty acids:

– Myristic acid

– Palmitic acid

– Stearic acid
– Oleic acid

– Linoleic acid

– Arachidic acid

– Behenic acid

Sterols are a group of compounds that have a chemical structure similar to steroid hormones. There are different types of sterols like:-

– Cholesterol
– Phytosterols
– Isoprenoid

Different types of sterols can be found in the body:

– Sterols
– Steroid saponins
– Triterpenoids

Triterpenoids are an essential compound required for the human body’s development. The sterols are the main cholesterol component in the cell membrane and the nervous system.

The triglycerides are the other important compound required for the body’s average growth.

If you want to know how to identify lipids with hydrophobic groups, then this blog will help you understand them better. So, let’s get started and learn things in a better way.

2. Lipids with Hydrophilic Groups

Lipids are the major components of our body. They are the primary source of energy in the body. There are two kinds of lipids: soaked and unsaturated. Saturated lipids comprise hydrogen, carbon, oxygen, and nitrogen.
Unsaturated lipids are made up of hydrogen, carbon, oxygen, and nitrogen, and they are unsaturated. Unsaturated lipids are polyunsaturated, monounsaturated, and saturated.

Hydrophilic groups:
The hydrophilic groups are composed of the elements like nitrogen, oxygen, carbon, hydrogen, etc. These groups are attached to the molecules by a bond.

The hydrophilic groups are generally present in the lipids. The hydrophilic groups make the lipids more soluble in water.
How do hydrophilic groups work?

When the water molecules enter the lipid, the water molecules start attracting the lipids. The attraction between water and lipid causes the lipid to dissolve in water.

Hydrophilic groups make the lipids more soluble in water.
The lipids with hydrophilic groups are known as lipids with hydrophilic groups. They have been used in many industries.

Lipids with hydrophilic groups:
There are different lipids with hydrophilic groups, but here I will discuss only three types with hydrophilic group


A lipid with Hydrophilic Group 1: Phospholipids
The first type of lipid with a hydrophilic group is phospholipids. These are the most common lipids and are made up of three fatty acids, namely glycerol, phosphoric acid, and sugar called choline.

Phospholipids are more effective than any other type of lipids because of their presence of hydrophilic groups.

A lipid with Hydrophilic Group 2: Sterols
The second type of lipids with hydrophilic groups is sterols. Sterols are composed of a hydrophobic group and a hydrophilic group. Sterols are more effective than other lipids because they absorb water.

A lipid with Hydrophilic Group 3: Glycolipids
The third type of lipids with hydrophilic groups is glycolipids. They contain a glycerol molecule and sugar called lactose.

I wish you have comprehended the basic concept of lipids with hydrophilic groups. I will tell you some essential facts about lipids with hydrophilic groups in the following position.

3. Phospholipids

Phospholipids are present in the cell membrane and are necessary for the cell’s normal functioning. They are an essential component of the cell membrane because they act as a protective barrier.

They provide the cell membrane stability and protect it from changes inside and outside the cell. Phospholipids also assist in the formation of the cell membrane and give it fluidity. They are present in the form of phosphorous and phosphate groups and are essential for the structure of cell membranes.

Phospholipids are found in most living organisms and are necessary for maintaining cell growth. The presence of phospholipids increases the fluidity of the cell membrane, which helps in the movement of water molecules through the membrane. It also helps in the transport of nutrients and other senses.
Four types of phospholipids are present in the cell membrane:

The first type is phosphatidylcholine (PC), found in the membrane’s outer part. PC is a significant component of the eukaryotic plasma membrane. It is also present in the cell membranes of the red blood cells, and it is also present in the membranes of the lungs, kidneys, and intestines.
The second type is sphingomyelin (SM). SM is a lipoprotein, and it is found in the plasma membrane.

The third type is phosphatidylethanolamine (PE). PE is a polar lipid in the cytoplasmic side of the cell membrane.
The fourth type is phosphatidylserine (PS). PS is a phospholipid on the inner surface of the cell membrane.

So, these are the types of phospholipids present in the cell membrane, and why are they so important?
The next question is, what are the benefits of phospholipids? I will tell you the answer.
Benefits of phospholipids:

It increases the cell membrane fluidity
It assists in the transport of substances
It helps in the construction of the cell membrane
It helps in the metabolism of the cell

It provides stability to the cell membrane

So, now you know about the types of phospholipids in the cell membrane. If you want to learn more about the other benefits of phospholipids, then keep reading my article.

4. Glycolipids

Have you ever thought about how the body works? Well, your body works uniquely. That is why we need to know how it works. Lipids are the second most important compound that is present in our body. Lipids are fats primarily found in the form of glycerol and fatty acids.
Glycolipids are fats that are made of sugars and lipids. They are not common in nature, but they are found in plants. They are also present in animals and humans.

Lipids are the basic components of the human body and are essential for every single function in our body. Several lipids are present in the body, like triglycerides, phospholipids, cholesterol, cholesterol esters, sphingolipids, ceramides, glycolipids, and fatty acids.

Triglycerides are the primary component of fat; that is why they are present in all types of food. Triglycerides are fats formed when we eat food; they are the only source of energy we get from our bodies.

They are found in the form of triglycerides that are formed of three fatty acids. Fatty acids are the building blocks of our body, and they are stored in our body in the form of triglycerides.

Cholesterol is another important compound that is present as a steroid. It is fat that is present in our body, and it is essential for our body.
It is mainly used for the production of hormones, and they are present in our brain, heart, liver, and bones.

Fatty Acids
Last but not least, fatty acids are an essential compound in the body. Fatty acids are the source of energy required for our body, and they are used for the production of energy, hormones, and cell growth.

So, these are the different types of lipids that are present in our bodies. These are the essential components of our body that are responsible for many functions and activities in our body.

Membrane Lipids | 4 Important Points

5. Sterols and Steroid Glycosides

Steroids are chemicals used to control the animal’s weight, and they have a wide range of functions in the human body. Steroids reduce cholesterol levels, increase the immune system strength, prevent muscle loss and increase appetite.

Sterols are another type of steroid produced in the body and help regulate the hormone balance in the human body. They are mainly found in vegetables and fruits.

Why are steroids and sterols good for acne?
Because they contain phytoestrogens which are responsible for stimulating the production of hormones.

So, if you are suffering from acne, try out these natural remedies to get rid of acne quickly.

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