Adipose tissue is an active metabolic tissue that secretes multiple metabolically important proteins, known as adipokines. Adiponectin is an important adipokine because of its beneficial effects on glucose and lipid metabolism. Low levels of adiponectin are associated with disease states such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Direct administration of adiponectin has been shown to be beneficial in animal models of diabetes, obesity and atherosclerosis. Adiponectin levels in humans can be increased through indirect methods such as weight loss or treatment with thiazolidinediones. This article will review the epidemiology and therapeutic options with adiponectin.