Adipocyte dysfunction is strongly associated with the development of obesity and insulin resistance. It is accepted that the regulation of adipocytokine secretion or the adipocyte-specific gene expression is one of the most important targets for the prevention of obesity and amelioration of insulin sensitivity. In this study, we demonstrated that anthocyanins (cyanidin or cyanidin 3-glucoside) have the potency of a unique pharmacological function in isolated rat adipocytes. Treated adipocytes with anthocyanins enhanced adipocytokine (adiponectin and leptin) secretion and up-regulated the adipocyte specific gene expression without activation of PPARgamma in isolated rat adipocytes. The gene expression of adiponectin was also up-regulated in white adipose tissue in mice fed an anthocyanin supplemented diet. As one of the possible mechanisms, AMP-activated protein kinase activation would be associated with these changes, nevertheless, the AMP:ATP ratio was significantly decreased by administration of the anthocyanins. These data suggest that anthocyanins have a potency of unique therapeutic advantage and also have important implications for preventing obesity and diabetes.