The Maillard reaction, first described during the early 20th century, originally referred to the browning reaction that occurs between amino acids and sugars during the cooking and processing of foods. This reaction contributes to the color, taste, aroma, and texture of foods, and also affects their nutritional and toxicological properties. The Maillard reaction, which has been at the crossroads of food and biomedical sciences, is now also known to contribute to the natural and normal aging of tissue proteins and other biomolecules. It is also implicated in the pathologic processes of a range of age-related chronic diseases, including arthritis, atherosclerosis, diabetes, and neurodegenerative diseases. The role of the Maillard reaction in diabetes and its complications has become a major focus of research, leading to a better understanding of the importance of oxidative stress, lipid peroxidation, and hyperlipidemia in diabetic complications.