The condition is caused by a lack of the hormone insulin.
Without enough insulin, the body struggles to convert sugar in the blood into energy.
You could prevent diabetes, or lower your blood sugar, by eating more peas, a scientist has claimed.
Peas have a low glycemic index, and could lower blood sugar.
Glycemic index is used to describe how a food affects blood sugar levels.
Foods with a low glycemic index are absorbed by the body slower, so blood sugar is less likely to suddenly increase.
Most fruits, vegetables, milk and pulses have a low glycemic index, and could benefit diabetes patients.
“The glycemic index identifies foods that increase blood sugar rapidly,” said Dr Mohammad Asif, from the GRD Institute of Management & Technology, India.
“This handy tool allows you to favour foods that have much less effect on blood sugar.”
Peas and split peas are some of the best legumes for diabetes patients to add to their diet, Asif added.
Lentils, beans and non-fat soy products should also be eaten by patients.
Eating a healthy, balanced diet could help you to prevent type 2 diabetes, the NHS said.
Try cutting back on fat, sugar and salt in your diet, while increasing the amount of fibre you eat.
If you’re overweight, losing weight could also lower your risk of the condition.
About one in 17 people have diabetes in the UK.