Type 2 diabetes mellitus is reported to be treated by modern drugs including insulin. However, patient compliance, side effects and cost effectiveness have paved the way to try the complementary and alternative medicine. Diabetes mellitus (DM), a chronic hyperglycaemic disorder, is characterized by an increase in the oxidative stress. The present systematic review aimed to summarize the findings from the published literature focusing on the effect of herbal extract towards the type 2 DM. Databases, including Pubmed, Science direct, Web of Knowledge, and Google scholar were searched using the terms ‘herbs’, type 2 DM’, ‘herbs and type 2 DM’. Only single herb related clinical studies issued in the English language between 2000 and 2013 were included. Data was extracted by two independent investigators, and the references of included studies were thoroughly reviewed. A total of 20 studies met the selected criteria. Few studies showed the comparison with oral hypoglycemic agents. Few (3 out of 20) studies demonstrated the potential effects of herbal extract towards the risk factors of diabetic complications. It was observed that there were less published clinical data on herbal extracts used in the management of type 2 DM. The results of the present systematic review may encourage clinicians and medical researchers to use herbal products for effective management of DM and its complications.