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While this study was done in flies it showed that refined sugar inhibits a longevity gene called Foxo3 that is conserved in flies and in humans. This means that it is likely that excess refined sugar may also inhibit Foxo3 in humans but future experiments need to illuminate this. Foxo3 is a master regulator of hundreds of genes that are involved in stress resistance, autophagy, and stem cell production. Humans that have a certain variation that make the foxo3 gene active more often have a 2.7-fold increased likelihood of living to be a centenarian.

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