In recent years, the role of free radical damage consequent to oxidative stress is widely discussed in diabetic complications. In this aspect, the protection of cell integrity by trace elements is a topic to be investigated. Vanadium is a trace element believed to be important for normal cell function and development. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of vanadyl sulfate supplementation on the antioxidant system in the muscle tissue of diabetic rats. Diabetes was induced by intraperitoneal injection of streptozotocin (STZ, 65 mg/kg body weight) to male Swiss albino rats. The rats were randomly divided into 4 groups: Group I, control; Group II, vanadyl sulfate control; Group III, STZ-diabetic untreated; Group IV, STZ-diabetic treated with vanadyl sulfate. Vanadyl sulfate (100 mg/kg) was given daily by gavage for 60 days. At the last day of the experiment, rats were killed, muscle tissues were taken, homogenized in cold saline to make a 10% (w/v) homogenate. Body weights and blood glucose levels were estimated at 0, 30 and 60th days. Antioxidant enzymes, superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT), glutathione reductase (GR), glutathione peroxidase (GPx), glutathione-S-transferase (GST), as well as carbonic anhydrase (CA), myeloperoxidase (MPO) activities and protein carbonyl content (PCC) were determined in muscle tissue. Vanadyl sulfate administration improved the loss in body weight due to STZ-induced diabetes and decreased the rise in blood glucose levels. It was shown that vanadium supplementation to diabetic rats significantly decrease serum antioxidant enzyme levels, which were significantly raised by diabetes in muscle tissue showing that this trace element could be used as preventive for diabetic complications.