There is currently no convincing evidence that any specific food or dietary pattern can ‘boost’ our immune system to treat or to prevent us catching Covid-19.
There are several nutrients (copper, folate, iron, selenium, zinc and vitamins A, B6, B12, C and D) that play an important role in our immune system. It is generally advised to eat a healthy, balanced diet rich in fruits and vegetables, which allows us to obtain these nutrients through our food. We cannot recommend any one food over another, but instead encourage a good variety of foods.
I notice the WHO makes the following comment on garlic – ‘Garlic is a food that may have some antimicrobial properties. However, there is no evidence from the current outbreak that eating garlic has protected people from the new coronavirus’
There is also currently no evidence that any supplement can ‘boost’ our immune system and prevent or treat viral infections, like COVID-19. We should keep this in mind when assessing information from people or organisations who claim otherwise in order to promote products.
In addition to healthy eating, being physically active, reducing stress and getting enough sleep will also help support normal immune functioning.
Good hygiene practice, social distancing, and isolating those who are infected are the best-known ways to protect yourself against Covid-19.
British Dietetic Association
European Food Information Council