Vitamins Which Can Boost Your Immune System Amidst Coronavirus Fears

Woman with oranges close-up to her face.

With many worrying about the effect coronavirus may have on the country, and reports on how infectious it truly is hitting the headlines every day, the team at have put together some advice on how best to boost your immune system amidst these fears. Whilst boosting your immune system may not prevent coronavirus, it’s always worth taking in the following information to ensure you are as fit and healthy as possible should you come into contact with the virus…

Vitamin C

Display of veg and fruit that contain vitamin C

Vitamin C is possibly the best thing you can consume if you’re looking to give your immune system a big boost. Vitamin C helps stimulate the production of white blood cells (also known as leukocytes). These are cells from your immune system that help to fight infectious disease and foreign invaders. Your body doesn’t store vitamin C and therefore you should be looking to consume foods rich in the nutrient, such as oranges, kiwifruit, brussels sprouts and potatoes on a daily basis.

Delicious ripe kiwi fruits

Pic: Shutterstock

It’s a vital vitamin needed for repairing and growing tissue; it helps heal wounds, maintain healthy bones and acts as an antioxidant, fighting free radicals that can weaken the immune system. It isn’t a magic nutrient and may not stop you from catching a cold or the flu completely, but it will certainly give your body more of a fighting chance.



Zinc is an immunity superhero that is often overlooked when it comes to fighting colds. It works synergistically with vitamin C, which is why we combine these nutrients in our personalised formulations if your immune system needs an extra helping hand. Studies have shown that zinc may help to reduce the duration of colds by up to 50%!

Vitamin E

Similarly to vitamin C, vitamin E acts as an antioxidant that assists in fighting off infection. There are plenty of supplements available should you want to give your body a boost in this vitamin, however, you can also find vitamin E in almonds, peanuts, sunflower seeds and spinach.

raw fresh spinach with drops in a colander on a rustic wooden table;

Pic: Shutterstock


Mushrooms have been used in traditional medicine in Asia for thousands of years for their well-known immune-boosting powers. As well as having antibacterial and antiviral properties, mushrooms also contain beta-glucans. Beta-glucans make up the mushroom cell walls and stimulate the immune system.

Roasted Mushrooms;

Pic: Shutterstock

Vitamin D

It’s almost impossible to get sufficient sunlight in the UK during the winter months (and sometimes summer months too!) for the body to absorb enough vitamin D, which is a problem for our immune systems as vitamin D stimulates the production of anti-microbial proteins, which we rely on to fight off infection.

The reason this vitamin is so important is because it has receptors that activate enzymes on the surfaces of our white blood cells. Not getting enough vitamin D can lead to autoimmune diseases or repeated infection.

vitl vitamin D



Plate of foods which contain iron - liver, kidney beans, pulses

An essential mineral that helps to transport oxygen throughout the body, iron is essential for a tip-top immune system and getting enough of it will help you fight off infections.

Iron is fundamental to the growth of B cells and T cells that are a major cellular components of the adaptive immune response, so low iron levels affect the body’s capacity to adequately protect the body from viruses, bacteria and other pathogens.  You can take iron supplements if you feel you do not eat enough foods rich in the nutrient, such as tofu, beans, lentils, baked potatoes or fortified cereals.

Jacket potato with baked beans;

Pic: Shutterstock

To find out more about vitl’s immunity supplement, £9.95.

Georgie Murphy, MSc Nutrition ANutr at, commented:

“It is not yet known what cures Coronavirus but by supplementing with the right nutrients, you can ensure your immune system is better prepared in case you come into contact with someone who has the illness. If you do find yourself getting sick often or that it usually takes you a long time to recover, you should explore why this may be the case and a DNA Nutrition Test can help you identify which nutrients you’re likely to have problems absorbing efficiently and therefore which supplements you’re more likely to benefit from taking. As well as taking vitamins, you should ensure you are leading a healthy lifestyle; drink lots of water, eat healthily, get lots of sleep, and exercise. Simple lifestyle changes can truly make all the difference.”

Moira Chisholm

I'm the Health Editor on My Weekly and am always interested to hear what's new in this fascinating field. I also deal with the gardening, shopping pages, general features, our website content and the Ask Helen problem page. I have a special interest in Christmas content because I'm on the team for Your Best Ever Christmas Magazine, too!