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General Writing and Grammar Help/Cut back on something - cut down on something

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Question
Dear Ted:

Is there a difference between "to cut BACK on something" and "to cut DOWN on something"?

If so, when should I use each of them?

Would you please give me some examples?

Thank you,

Paolo

Answer
Dear Paolo:


Is there a difference between "to cut BACK on something" and "to cut DOWN on something"?

*** Both phrases mean to use LESS of something.  They really mean the same.

The government has decided to CUT BACK ON spending on the armed forces.

Doctors advised her to CUT DOWN ON the amount of saturated fats in her diet.

Ted

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Ted Nesbitt

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I am the bibliographic instruction and reference librarian at a public college. Some members of the English department recommend me to their students. I offer assistance in grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, and paragraph development. My master`s thesis concerns William Faulkner`s tragic novels. I formerly taught advanced placement English at two schools in the Philadelphia area.

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I have been one of the highest-ranked volunteers in this category for more than a decade.

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B. A. and M. A in English; MSIS in Library & Information Sciences; graduate study in philosophy

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