Sulbutiamine is a synthetic derivative of thiamine which can cross the blood-brain barrier much more effectively. Sulbutiamine provides a mild stimulating effect when taken, and is often used for improving mental stamina and treating erectile dysfunction.



  • Improve memory. [3][4][5]
  • Increases energy and improves focus. [1][2]
  • Improved overall mood. [8]
  • Effective for treatment of psychogenic erectile dysfunction. [6]
  • Effective for the treatment of asthenia. Asthenia is a condition of chronic fatigue that is cerebral in nature. [1][2]
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What Is Sulbutiamine?

Sulbutiamine is a synthetic derivative of vitamin B1 (thiamine). Up until the 20th century, a nervous system disorder called beriberi was very common in Japan. Beriberi causes severe lethargy and fatigue, along with complications effecting the cardiovascular, nervous, muscular, and gastrointestinal systems. People were contracting beriberi because they had a thiamine deficiency.

Due to the spread of beriberi, Japan set up a Vitamin B Research Committee. This committee led to the discovery of Sulbutiamine. Since its discovery, studies have revealed that Sulbutiamine has many nootropic properties and its uses extend far beyond the treatment of beriberi.

Medical Uses of Sulbutiamine

Sulbutiamine has a variety of clinical uses. It was developed as a treatment for beriberi and is frequently prescribed for the treatment of asthenia, a disease with cerebral origins that causes chronic fatigue. Sulbutiamine’s cognitive benefits cause it to be prescribed to improve memory in patients suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and schizophrenia.

A recent study has also shown Sulbutiamine to be effective in treating erectile dysfunction. In the study sixteen out of twenty patients found success using Sulbutiamine to treat their erectile dysfunction. This is significant because Sulbutiamine is much cheaper and safer than most drugs prescribed for this purpose.

Using Sulbutiamine

Unlike many nootropics, Sulbutiamine is not meant to be taken daily. It is not particularly dangerous to do so, but a tolerance builds quickly and will lose much of its effectiveness after a few days of consecutive use. Sulbutiamine is best used sparingly, its stimulating effect and increase in mental endurance makes it a much safer alternative to traditional stimulants, though its effects are more subtle.

How to Take Sulbutiamine

Sulbutiamine can be taken as a bulk powder or in capsules. Like with most nootropics, bulk powder Sulbutiamine is much cheaper and with the purchase of a capping machine.

Bulk powder Sulbutiamine is notorious for having an extremely foul taste, so it is strongly recommended that you dissolve it in a beverage with a strong flavor or use a capping machine to create your own pills.

Dosing Sulbutiamine

The recommended dosage for therapeutic use is 850mg per day for a 150lb person. [4] However, the manufacturer of Arcalion recommends dosages not exceeding that of 600mg per day.

Usually a 200-400 mg dose should be sufficient, however some people may want to take 600 mg. It is best to take only one dose of Sulbutiamine a day. Unless using it to treat a specific condition it is not wise to exceed 600 mg per day. Even though no serious side effects have been noticed at higher doses, taking more than 600 mg at once isn’t likely to be more effective.

How Does Sulbutiamine Work?

Sulbutiamine is a fat soluble molecule that crosses the blood-brain barrier much more easily than vitamin B1 (thiamine). Once it crosses into the brain, it is metabolized to produce thiamine. [7] Thiamine is then used by the brain to produce the neurotransmitters Acetylcholine (ACh) and GABA. [3]

Sulbutiamine also facilitates glutamatergic transmissions. Glutamate is the most common excitatory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system. It plays an important role in cognitive functions such as learning and memory. [9][10]

Finally, sulbutiamine reduces the release of dopamine in the prefontal cortex, consequently increasing the density of D1 dopamine receptors. [8]

Safety and Side Effects of Sulbutiamine

Sulbutiamine is regarded as being extremely safe. At therapeutic doses of 850mg per day only mild skin allergies have been reported. There is only report of complications which was caused by chronic overuse. [5] A patient suffering from bipolar disorder was prescribed sulbutiamine because he was suffering from lack of energy. Since he found the sulbutiamine very helpful he ceased all his other medications and began to take more than twice the daily recommended dosage. The end result was severity in his bipolar disorder symptoms. No serious issues in healthy people have arisen from use of sulbutiamine.


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Cited Studies

1. Shah SN; Sulbutiamine Study Group (2003). “Adjuvant role of vitamin B analogue (sulbutiamine) with anti-infective treatment in infection associated asthenia”. J Assoc Physicians India 51: 891–5. PMID 14710977.

2. Levin OS, Slizkova IuB (2007). “[The use of enerion in the treatment of asthenic disorders in patients after mild cranio-cerebral trauma]“. Zh Nevrol Psikhiatr Im S S Korsakova 107 (5): 44–8. PMID 18379496.

3. Micheau J, Durkin TP, Destrade C, Rolland Y, Jaffard R (1985). “Chronic administration of sulbutiamine improves long term memory formation in mice: possible cholinergic mediation”. Pharmacol Biochem Behav 23 (2): 195–8. doi:10.1016/0091-3057(85)90555-6. PMID 4059305.

4. Bizot JC, Herpin A, Pothion S, Pirot S, Trovero F, Ollat H (2005). “Chronic treatment with sulbutiamine improves memory in an object recognition task and reduces some amnesic effects of dizocilpine in a spatial delayed-non-match-to-sample task”. Prog Neuropsychopharmacol Biol Psychiatry 29 (6): 928–35. doi:10.1016/j.pnpbp.2005.04.035. PMID 15951087.

5. Ollat, H; B Laurent, S Bakchine, BF Michel, J Touchon, B Dubois (2007). “[Effects of the association of sulbutiamine with an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor in early stage and moderate Alzheimer disease". Encephale 33 (2): 211–15. PMID 17675917.

6. Dmitriev DG, Gamidov SI, Permiakova OV (2005). "[Clinical efficacy of the drug enerion (sulbutiamine) in the treatment of patients with psychogenic (functional) erectile dysfunction]“. Urologiia 1 (1): 32–5. PMID 15776829.

7. Bettendorff L, Weekers L, Wins P, Schoffeniels E (1990). “Injection of sulbutiamine induces an increase in thiamine triphosphate in rat tissues”. Biochem Pharmacol 40 (11): 2557–60. doi:10.1016/0006-2952(90)90099-7. PMID 2268373.

8. Trovero F, Gobbi M, Weil-Fuggaza J, Besson MJ, Brochet D, Pirot S (2000). “Evidence for a modulatory effect of sulbutiamine on glutamatergic and dopaminergic cortical transmissions in the rat brain”. Neurosci Lett 292 (1): 49–53. doi:10.1016/S0304-3940(00)01420-8.PMID 10996447.

9. Parada-Turska J, Turski WA (1990). “Excitatory amino acid antagonists and memory: effect of drugs acting at N-methyl-D-aspartate receptors in learning and memory tasks”. Neuropharmacology 29 (12): 1111–6. doi:10.1016/0028-3908(90)90034-O. PMID 2149871.

10. Puma C, Baudoin C, Bizot JC (1998). “Effects of intraseptal infusions of N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor ligands on memory in an object recognition task in rats”. Neurosci Lett 244 (2): 97–100. doi:10.1016/S0304-3940(98)00137-2. PMID 9572594.

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