As of March 27, more than 533,000 coronavirus cases have been reported all over the globe. This highly-communicable disease, which originated from Wuhan City in China, has already claimed the lives of more than 24,000 individuals. The COVID-19 death count is already alarming, but experts predicted that the numbers are expected to soar in the following weeks.

The brightest minds from all over the world are now joining forces to find the cure for COVID-19. Experts are racing against the clock every day as the demand for an effective and reliable vaccine increases. Due to desperation, some people were forced to resort to ineffective solutions that make false claims.

CLAIM: Bananas can prevent coronavirus

Earlier in March, a video circulating on Facebook claimed that bananas were effective in preventing coronavirus. According to the video, scientists from the University of Queensland in Australia claimed that 'having a banana a day keeps the coronavirus away.'

The video uses collective clips of news reports from ABC News Australia and from the Wall Street Journal. Beyond that, it did not provide any reputable source to back its claims.

In spite of the lack of evidence and source, many people still bought it. It has been shared by thousands of people online, with some even endorsing banana as an 'effective cure' against COVID-19.

But how true is this claim? 

Also read: Chloroquine confirmed as coronavirus cure, but should be taken with caution

VERDICT: Bananas DO NOT prevent coronavirus 

This claim is 'bananas.' Simply put, none of these claims can hold water. While banana is a good source of vitamin B-6, there's no reliable evidence that it can help fight off coronavirus. To settle things once and for all, let's hear what the University of Queensland has to say about this.

Rappler, a Philippine-based news outlet, contacted the university's communication team to shed light on this claim. In a statement, they denounced the video as fake and advised people to heed caution in spreading false claims.

"The video is fake and we would strongly discourage people from sharing this information. We would suggest you share your concerns with the social media platforms."

Soon enough, Facebook also caught wind of the circulating video. As of writing, the said video has already been taken down by Facebook after being checked by independent fact-checkers. 

Effective measures to protect yourself from coronavirus

According to the World Health Organization, the best way to protect yourself from this dreaded virus is by practicing good hygiene and social distancing.

1. Always make it a habit to wash your hands on a regular basis. Experts recommend washing your hands with soap and running water for about 20 seconds. For good measure, you can also use alcohol or hand sanitizer.

2. As much as possible, avoid going out in public. If you must, make sure to avoid close contact with anyone. Right after you get home, change your clothing as coronavirus can cling onto your clothes.

3. Avoid touching your face, most particularly your eyes, nose, and mouth with unclean hands. The virus can make its way to your body through these orifices.

Also related: COVID-19 patient zero might be discovered soon