The Mythology: Unique antioxidant which protects your muscles from the wear and tear associated with exercise and oxidative stress.
The Truth: Probably works. But no better than green tea and vitamins.
Research: There is some evidence that ALA does protect the body from oxidative damage caused by exercise, however the hype is not justifiable given conflicting reports. While some anti-oxidant activity has been demonstrated post exercise, the effect seems fairly small and difficult to translate into measurable gains in performance. ALA as an antioxidant does appear to have a number of potential benefits ranging from improved immunity to better cardiovascular condition, however its unsure whether those benefits would just as easily be achieved by consuming other anti-oxidants – tea, ACE vitamins etc. I don’t think this is a revolutionary supplement, but if you want to add it to your stack, I won’t think any less of you.