Diabetic nephropathy (DN) is currently well established as the most common cause of end-stage renal disease in most parts of the world. Notwithstanding the expanding basic and clinical research in this field, the pathogenesis remains far from clear and hence the treatment of DN remains suboptimal. There is a critical need for the development of newer therapeutic strategies including alternative and complementary therapies. One of the natural products that was extensively studied in cancer and other chronic disease states such as diabetes is curcumin, an active ingredient in turmeric, a spice extensively used in India. In this manuscript, we present a critical review of the experimental and clinical evidence that supports the use of curcumin and its analogs in DN as well as the various proposed mechanisms for its biological actions in health and disease states.