Zach Bush, MD on Medika’s Quack Scale

Zach Bush, MD scores 5/5 on Medika's Quack Scale

Zach Bush, MD, scores 5/5 on our Quack Scale. He represents a very real danger to the general public, and we encourage members of the public to seek alternate medical or health advice and products from reliable, trustworthy sources. Do not follow recommendations from this individual relating to your personal health or the health of others and do not be misled into purchasing his products or enrolling in his new-age courses offered as cures to your ills.

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Qualification: Medical, Osteopathic, or Podiatric School, University Of Colorado Health Sciences Center School Of Medicine – Denver CO. Graduated: 2002. Internal Medicine,MD – Charlottesville, VA USA, Residency Completed: 2005. Bush is currently certified in only one discipline, that of Internal Medicine: Hospice & Palliative Medicine.

Current Licensing Status: Licenced to practice in Virginia by the Virginia Medical Board, License# 0101239018. You can check his current status here

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Resident: Charlottesville , VA

Existing Complaints: None listed in a professional capacity.

Website: zachbushmd.com, intrinsichealthseries.com, farmersfootprint.us, ionbiome.com, themclinic.com

What happens when you cross alt-Health, traditional medicine, Deepak, and Yoda? You end up with someone like Zach Bush, MD. He is the poster boy for Predatory Health and with a string of medical qualifications behind him and a very carefully managed public profile,

Bush appears at first glance to be squeaky clean, a real medical messiah, but looks can, as we all know, be deceptive. Dig a little deeper and the real picture behind a slick, well oiled, and carefully orchestrated marketing machine emerges. One designed with a singular purpose. To enrich Zach Bush.

His website offers little gems of new-age “Deepak Chopra like nonsense-statements”, pseudoscience mixed in with traditional medicine, and his range of natural (of course) products and alternate therapies. The lines below are taken directly from his site on a page where he discusses Covid’s impact on the world.

May this respiratory virus that now shares space and time with us teach us of the grave mistakes we have made in disconnecting from our nature and warring against the foundation of the microbiome. If we choose to learn from, rather than fear, this virus, it can reveal the source of our chronic disease epidemics that are the real threat to our species.

The page also just happens to feature a range of cleverly identified products designed to boost your immune system. The insinuation is clear. Covid is a virus-like influenza and these products will help you combat it. Here is how he phrases the sales pitch.

 I’ve included below a series of Lifestyle Cornerstones to integrate into your everyday practices, particularly during respiratory risk seasons, as well as the regimen that I recommend for those feeling the need for more health resources during this time.

Bush has become prominent in Autism circles, touting his theories of gut health as the root cause of autism and offering his products as a treatment. Although the idea of the gut’s involvement in autism is under serious investigation there is, as yet no hard scientific evidence to validate his claims. Bush possesses none or he would most definitely be sharing it. At the Autism One conference in Chicago in 2016, Bush made this statement;

Bush explained, using slides of the gut viewed through a microscope as visual aids, how his plant-derived mineral supplement, RESTORE ($49.95 for a one-month supply), strengthens cell membranes in the gut to keep toxins from leaking out. Bush told the parents in the audience that he was “excited to just be a piece of your puzzle” in the parents’ quest to “rebirth that child into a state of health.” 

Bush isn’t the only doctor that’s cashing in on the gullibility of the public and their desire for new-age hocus pocus, but he is by far the slickest. It’s what makes him so appealing, so believable and so dangerous. He is well aware of where the line is, drawn by the FDA in shifting sand, and he ensures he doesn’t step over it. He now regularly shares platforms with proponents of Covid conspiracies and his views on the coronavirus are dangerous.

Bush’s video interviews on Covid, featured on LondonReal, are accompanied by trailers of the movie Plandemic, a falsified load of pseudoscience and nonsense that is now banned from numerous platforms. These associations confirm his position as quackery’s new poster boy. If you’ve got the money, Zach Bush has the answers. Look deep into his eyes and suspend belief.

Let’s examine the claims published on his website about autism. The following quote is lifted directly from his site’s page on the topic.

Autism spectrum disorder has risen in prevalence from 1 in 5000 children in 1975 to 1 in 36 children in 2016, and the rate has been doubling every 3-4 years in the last decade in the US.

And the rate has been doubling every 3-4 years in the last decade in the US. We are on target to experience 1 in 3 children with Autism by 2035, just 16 years away

Complete and utter lies and fabrication, designed to instill fear in you and make you want the solutions and products he sells. It’s textbook deception, practiced by quacks and charlatans across the globe. I hereby issue a direct challenge to Bush to produce statistical data to verify this claim. He cannot.

The only reason there has been an increase in autism diagnosis over the last few years (and Bush is well aware of this) is that guidelines for diagnosing the condition were relaxed. Resultantly, many more people were reclassified as having autism. Deception, misdirection, and lies. Which cup is the ball in! Here’s a screenshot, just in case the page is whitewashed.

Screenshot from Zach Bush MD

Zach Bush uses a mix of science, pseudoscience, and untruths (lies) couched in new age terminology to fool his victims into purchasing his products and seminars. He is a health predator, no matter how you dress him up, and he is an embarrassment to traditional medicine and the healthcare profession in general.

If you have a serious medical condition or are feeling unwell, you need to seek advice from reputable and established practitioners of evidence-based medicine. There is no harm in seeking alternate treatments to supplement a medical regime of treatments if this is done in careful conjunction, and with the knowledge of, your healthcare provider. In and of their own, alternate treatments aren’t going to cure you, and believing they will, can cost you your life.

Supporting Articles

Articles critical of Bush are hard to come by, buried below his domination of Google searches on the topic of, well, Zach Bush. His newly employed marketing agents (2019) have done him proud. It is also a clear indication of how alt-Health now dominates Google’s pages and how simple it is to manipulate appearances. You simply flood the market with new articles.

Publication – C-Ville: Author Melissa Angell, on June 28, 2016. Missing doctors: Patient seeks records after clinic closes Verdict: The caption on the photo gives an indication of how long Bush has been at his game, and how he has refined his earlier techniques.

Dr. Zachary Bush, right, opened alternative clinic Revolution Health Center in Scottsville. Dr. Martin Katz was a partner there, and both told their patients: “You have the power to heal yourself.”

John Robinson

Publication – Provocative Change Works: Author Nick Kemp, July 29, 2020. Open letter to Michael Hall by Richard Bolstad. Verdict: Bush is a quack, uttering pseudoscientific nonsense.

this stuff by Zach Bush is just wacky.“Bush ruined what could have been an interesting talk when he said that microRNA can be transmitted by breathing. He claimed that you can literally go to the gym, do nothing except breathe in the microRNA that others exhale, and benefit because your cells think they worked out. And, in case that wasn’t enough of a stretch, he described how consuming microRNA from “bored” corn grown in a field with “tens of thousands of corn plants” makes us afraid of diversity and directly contributes to racism and mass shootings.”

Publication – Chad Hayes MD: Author Chad Hayes on March 4, 2017. Citations Needed: The curious “science” of integrative medicine. Verdict: A clinical dissection of the rubbish Bush spews by a medical doctor who practices pediatrics. An excellent article well worth reading and many of the other charlatans we highlight are included in this breakdown of a Conference Hayes attended called, “Get Your Life Back NOW!” held in Orlando, FL in 2017, at which Bush spoke.

In addition to poorly executed science, there were a lot of “facts” tossed out at the conference that left me wondering if the speakers were being intentionally dishonest, or if they were just really, really wrong. Chief among these offenders was Zach Bush, MD, who runs the M Clinic and “Intrinsic Health” center in Charlottesville, VA and sells the RESTORE line of supplements.

Bush, who seems to have some difficulty understanding basic concepts of genetics and mathematics, informed the audience that “genetically speaking, humans are pathetically simple.” His rationale for this was that humans have 20,000 genes, while fungi have 2 trillion. I’ll admit my initial ignorance; although 2 trillion seemed high, I didn’t really know how many genes fungi have. But it wasn’t hard to look up. Gene sequencing reveals that fungal genomes are similar in size to our own, at around 10,000-25,000 genes. But what are eight orders of magnitude among friends? Actual numbers aside, Bush further argued that “if microorganisms were the enemy, we’d be dead.” Which of course, many of our species are, having been unable to overcome infections from a dazzling array of microorganisms.

He then told us how amazing it is that the DNA repair enzyme “travels near the speed of light.” Unfortunately, this is even less true. DNA polymerases responsible for DNA repair travel along DNA strands at approximately 10-20 nucleotides per second, each of which is approximately 0.6 nanometers in length. Being as generous as I can, that comes out to 12 nanometers/second. And in that same second, a photon of light travels 300 million meters, or 25,000,000,000,000,000 times farther than the DNA repair enzyme.

Further revealing his ignorance about genetics, Bush informed us that while “scientists call 99% of DNA ‘junk,’” that simply can’t be correct because “there’s no waste in nature.” Bush asserts that what geneticists refer to as “junk DNA” actually codes for microRNA, small strands of RNA that regulate how our genes are expressed. While microRNA does actually exist, and the roles it plays are fascinating, it makes up a relatively small percentage of our genetic code, about 1-5%.

But then, Bush ruined what could have been an interesting talk when he said that microRNA can be transmitted by breathing. He claimed that you can literally go to the gym, do nothing except breathe in the microRNA that others exhale, and benefit because your cells think they worked out. And, in case that wasn’t enough of a stretch, he described how consuming microRNA from “bored” corn grown in a field with “tens of thousands of corn plants” makes us afraid of diversity and directly contributes to racism and mass shootings.

Publication – Fueled by Science: Author Chana Davis, PhD, 2019. Dear Scientific American. Vegetables are Not Toxic. Down with Fake News. Verdict: A damning condemnation of yet more pseudoscience Bush managed to get published in Scientific American. Bush was asked to redraft the article after this complaint. The original still stands and you can compare the misleading statements Bush presents as fact.

Rather than sticking to legitimate scientific sources (e.g. peer-reviewed scientific publications and meta-analyses by national organizations) the authors turn to a food author, a health product pushing salesman (Dr. Zach Bush) and pseudoscience haven Planetary Health (check it out if you want a smoothie that can cure Ebola!).

Zach Bush, MD, images are all used in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, commonly known as “fair use law”. This material is distributed without profit with the intent to provide commentary, review, education, and increase public health knowledge.

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Reporting a Healthcare Professional

In the U.S: The American Medical Association lists a very clear and distinct set of guidelines or Code of Conduct for doctors and healthcare professionals. If you feel this code has been breached, or if you have concerns relating to your healthcare provider, you need to get in touch with your state’s licensing board. You can find contact details for all the state boards on this page, The Federation of State Medical Boards

Medwatch is a brand of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and they have teeth with which to bite. You can access their online form for registering a complaint by following this link. At the moment, they’re really hot on fake covid-19 products and treatments and the individuals and websites selling the products or spreading misinformation.

The Department of Justice (DOJ) is an excellent place to register your covid related complaints as they have a task team set up specifically to protect consumers against charlatans and quacks. Fill in their online form or call their dedicated National Helpline number. They are also the place to report price gouging and hoarding.

In the U.K: Direct your complaints to the GMC (General Medical Council) via their website, which also makes allowance for Welsh speakers.

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4 COMMENTS

  1. Hi Hal, well we are animals that have most definitely overgrazed our habitat. Having said that, we are all here now, and certainly everyone has a right to flourish (as does all nature and all animals). We can only try as a species to treat the planet and all it’s life forms with respect going forwards, which in turn will make us healthier on every level. In my opinion, our unhealthy eating and way of life has made people vulnerable to viruses, as in they are not always robust enough to get through an attack. Therefore, I think we do need the vaccines. It’s a bit of a rock and a hard place situation and I don’t think anyone has the right to try to convince someone not to have a vaccine or shame someone for not wanting one.
    Take care!

  2. So if someone sees a problem, and develops solid claims/views about root causes of disease in line with gobs of other science around climate change and the deterioration of planetary health, they are not allowed to develop products to help combat that problem? That is a wildly disingenuous leap in logic. It could just as easily be argued that the onus is directly on him to provide those products since so few doctors or main stream media sources will give him any credence, and since he’s being painted as dangerous making others afraid to associate their products with his name.

    In the age of spin, with search engine algorithms morphing all the time to feed us junk food echo chamber information, of course he’d need to hire a marketing team. Of course, man, or you’d never hear his opinion. We could just as easily question the validity of your points, throwing shade at how highly you ranked on search results for criticisms of this “highly dangerous” doctor or how vehemently you oppose him based on the investment of your confidence in the very systems that are contributing to a cyclical lack of health across the globe. Heaven forbid we extend a little trust to people who really seem to be trying to help. And maybe you’re trying to help, too. That’s why I’m not going to go around publicly decrying your attacks on this man; I’m coming to you about it directly. It might be wise of you to consider a similar approach.

    I too felt like his claims about autism were a little misleading, but only a little. Autism is on a spectrum and using the over-simplified definitions he did was not accurate. His other examples of global health deterioration, however, were accurate, and you rightly said nothing to challenge those but instead cherry picked these few weak points on which to hinge your claims.

    I’m sure that the sources you cite to support your claims have some erroneous views, as well. And you probably do, too, as do I. Thank God he had the courage to say them out loud, surely knowing he’d be criticized. If he didn’t, the research to support or detract from his claims may never happen.

    It seems to me that at the root of all this is a fundamental lack of agreement on what actually constitutes human health. Human beings are not immortal, and should not ignore death or disease, but try to prevent them in the healthiest ways possible. We cannot seem to agree on what the “healthiest ways” are, probably as a result of systemic indoctrination. But what do I know.

    Cheers.

  3. Hal Brown,

    The primary reason people get cancer is because they are unhealthy due to lifestyle, diet, and environmental factors. We know this to be the case scientifically, as cancer rates and all cause mortality can be drastically reduced via diet and lifestyle changes alone. So the only sane cure is prevention, but sadly, diet and nutrition have not been integrated in to our pharmaceutical industry controlled, germ theory based, health care systems.

    Gene editing is fascinating and great, but we should consider how much of our resources we really need to be directing toward cancer research etc after we understand what we can do to improve overall human health in a natural fashion. Instead we treat growing rates of cancer and auto immune diseases as if that’s somehow normal.

  4. I appreciate the deep dive you did to find articles debunking this dangerous and irresponsible doctor. I tried and could only find two in addition to your report. I find it very distressing to see how many people are following his advice about Covid-19 vaccination. Most people wouldn’t consider me to be a scientist since as a psychotherapist I’m a social scientist, but one thing I learned is to be skeptical of claims that sound like pseudoscientific gobbledygook. Someone promoting items for sale on their websites also raises a red flag for me.

    His rationale for not getting the Covid-19 vaccination sounds like he wants to let life threatening viruses run rampant to save the planet. This is from his March newsletter:

    ………

    EXCERPT: We are engineering ourselves into a sterile bubble, securing our place far from the life giving capacity of this planet.

    On one hand, it’s the most grave scientific mistake and the most extreme hubris of human behavior. And on the other, it must be perfect. It’s exactly the next step we need to take. In doing this, we begin the journey into finding out who we really are — a figment of the beautiful imagination and creativity of nature – and just how dangerous it is to vilify that nature that has built us.

    50% of our human genome has been inserted directly by viruses. Nearly 10% of our genome was established by retroviruses similar to HIV.

    Eventually, society will realize the mistakes we’ve made and will learn an incredible lesson. When that happens, I look forward to the opportunity to witness the redirect of our research and clinical care in a new direction. Alignment with our nature and full capacity for health and vitality is possible. Are we willing to do the uncomfortable thing?

    …..

    According to him vaccines go against nature. I am sure that when CRISPR gene editing finds treatments, cures, and even prevention for cancer he will be against this too.

    His question “are we willing to do the right thing” suggest that the right thing to do is allow millions of people to die. It is as if he wants to cull the herd of humanity as if we are animals overgrazing our habitat.

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