The prevalence of obesity is increasing at an alarming rate in recent years. Many drugs for weight managing are available in the market; however their adverse effects and hazards have not been thoroughly evaluated, therefore herbal medicines are being proposed as an efficient, inexpensive and safe alternative. This review will address the current advances in using traditional herbal plants in obese and overweight humans and animals. Searching data bases were PubMed, Scopus, Google Scholar and Science direct, reported between 1990 and 2014. Articles were screened and selected by two researchers. Based on the available literature, abstract/full randomized clinical trials (RCTs), evidence studies, reviews, systematic reviews and books were surveyed. Studies with LI85008F, Itrifal Saghir, Hunteria umbellate, Morus alba, Melissa officinalis, and Artemisia capillarie, pomegranate leaf (PLE), NT (rhubarb, ginger, astragulus, red sage, and turmeric) combined with gallic acid (GA), ephedrine, caffeine, salicin, Adlay seed crude extract (ACE), Bufo-tsusho-san (BF) and Stimulant-free supplement (glucomannan, chitosan, fenugreek, Gymnema sylvestre, and vitamin C) show significant decreases in body weight. Only, NT (rhubarb, ginger, astragulus, red sage, turmeric) caused dose-limiting gastrointestinal toxicity. Additionally, Ma Huang and Guarana (ephedrine alkaloid and caffeine) caused mouth dryness, insomnia and headache. No other significant adverse effects were reported in all 31 trials included in this article. This review highlights the need for higherquality randomized, controlled trials to confirm the results.