Obesity is now recognised as a low grade, chronic inflammatory disease that is linked to a myriad of disorders including cancer, cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes (T2D). With respect to T2D, work in the last decade has revealed that cells of the immune system are recruited to white adipose tissue beds (WAT), where they can secrete cytokines to modulate metabolism within WAT. As many of these cytokines are known to impair insulin action, blocking the recruitment of immune cells has been purported to have therapeutic utility for the treatment of obesity-induced T2D. As inflammation is critical for host defence, and energy consuming in nature, the blockade of inflammatory processes may, however, result in unwanted complications. In this review, we outline the immunological changes that occur within the WAT with respect to systemic glucose homeostasis. In particular, we focus on the role of major immune cell types in regulating nutrient homeostasis and potential initiating stimuli for WAT inflammation.