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Five 'Cut' Expressions

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Cut down

Cut down means to use less or do less of something.

You should cut down on the amount of cigarettes you smoke.

I've cut down on how much coffee I drink. I used to drink five cups a day, now I drink two.

We're cutting down on the amount of paper we use in the office.

Cut out

To completely stop eating something, usually for health reasons.

My doctor recommended I cut out salt from my diet.

He's been looking much better since cutting out the beer.

I'm going to cut fast food out of my life.

Cut out for

To be suitable for something. Usually, to be the right type of person to do something. It is often used in negatives too.

After doing his basic training, I realised he wasn't cut out for the army.

Do you think he's cut out for being a surgeon?

She's really cut out for a career in sales.

Cut up

When you are cut up, you are very upset about something. This expression is more common in British English than American.

She's cut up because her cat hasn't come home for three days.

What's wrong with James? Did you see how cut up he looked?

He was very cut up when his sister was in hospital.

Cut off

When you cut someone off you interrupt them by stopping them from speaking or putting the phone down on them.

She didn't want to listen to my apology. She cut me off in the middle of my sentence.

I'm trying to call my sister in Spain but we keep getting cut off.

He has a bad habit of not listening to people and cutting them off.

Now choose the correct cut expression to complete these sentences:

  • 1) I haven't stopped eating fatty food, but I've really cut ___.

  • 2) I was really cut ___ to see you in so much pain.

  • 3) I'm not really cut ___ for a working nights.

  • 4) Sorry for cutting you ___. I didn't mean to interrupt.

  • 5) She cut ___ from two sugars in her coffee to one.