Adipose tissue is a highly active endocrine organ secreting a range of soluble products with both local and distant actions. These hormones have important roles in metabolism, reproduction, cardiovascular function and immunity. It is now evident that adipose endocrine function directly influences other organ systems, including the brain, liver and skeletal muscle. The endocrine function of adipose tissue is significantly regulated by nutritional status, and both are inextricably linked to the energy storage role of adipose tissue. This chapter highlights the endocrinology of adipose tissue by concentrating on functional aspects of the secreted products. The data of particular relevance to humans are highlighted, and areas in need of future research are suggested.