Definition of regulate in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈrɛɡjʊleɪt/


[with object]
1Control or maintain the rate or speed of (a machine or process) so that it operates properly: a hormone which regulates metabolism
More example sentences
  • Water is necessary to transport nutrients around the body, remove wastes, maintain body temperatures and regulate metabolic processes in our bodies.
  • He slipped inside and, struggling to think over the deafening noise of the generator, he found the control panel that regulated the machine and switched it off.
  • Depression stiffens the body's response to insulin, the hormone that helps regulate energy metabolism.
control, adjust, manage, balance, set, synchronize, modulate, tune
1.1Control (something, especially a business activity) by means of rules and regulations: the Code regulates the takeovers of all public companies
More example sentences
  • One can only suspect that both the US and the EU are responding to pressure from business leaders not to regulate their overseas activities.
  • Often governments for a variety of reasons decide to regulate the activities of firms that compete against each other.
  • In contrast, no previous treaty or customary rule existed regulating method of combat in internal armed conflict.
supervise, oversee, police, superintend, monitor, check (up on), keep an eye on, inspect, administer, be responsible for;
control, manage, direct, guide, govern, rule, order
informal keep tabs on, keep a tab on, keep a beady eye on
1.2Set (a clock or other apparatus) according to an external standard: the standard time by which other clocks were regulated
More example sentences
  • Clocks were regulated by electricity to Greenwich mean time.
  • Mr. Davies came every Friday to wind and regulate the clocks.



Pronunciation: /ˈrɛɡjʊlətɪv/
Example sentences
  • On the other hand, the public should accept some inconvenience to their daily routines due to regulative measures the government will inevitably take in order to protect them from the dangerous illness.
  • Meanwhile, back at home, businesses have very strong lobby groups that exert massive pressure on the government to not pass any regulative legislation.
  • In the West, liberal support for the child's independence rather than regulative monitoring by parents tends to prevent juvenile delinquency.


Late Middle English (in the sense 'control by rules'): from late Latin regulat- 'directed, regulated', from the verb regulare, from Latin regula 'rule'.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: regu|late

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