As an indicator of cortical excitability, direct current (DC) potentials were recorded from thirsted subjects before, during and after drinking 400 ml of water. Self-rated thirst was distinctly reduced after drinking. Compared with control conditions in which the subjects remained thirsty, during drinking a widespread negative potential shift occurred averaging over −70 μV at Cz. At the transition from the consumatory phase to the postconsumption phase, a slow positive potential shift commenced that was most pronounced over the anterior cortex (averaging over +40 μV at Fz) and persisted for more than 3 min after drinking. Control conditions excluded muscle activity, ocular movements, and changes in body fluid and serum osmolality as possible non-neuronal sources of the DC-potential changes. The sequence of negative and positive potential shifts associated with drinking indicates a coordinate regulation of cortical excitability that may facilitate consumatory behavior and its context-dependent encoding into memory.