How to Drink a Gallon of Water a Day

A complete overview about drinking a gallon of water in a day

Maybe you’ve seen a hydration challenge floating around the internet, or you’re just looking to amp up your daily water intake. Is drinking 1 gallon (3.8 L) of water all that it’s cracked up to be? And if so, how can you hop in on the trend? Don’t worry—we’re here to quench your thirst for knowledge with plenty of expert-verified tips, tricks, and helpful answers to your FAQs.

[Edit]Things You Should Know

  • Increase your daily water intake by carrying a water bottle around, infusing your drinks with fruit, and snacking on lots of fluid-rich foods.
  • Multiply your weight (in pounds) by 0.5 to get a baseline of how much water you need to drink per day (in oz).
  • Inspect the color of your urine. If it’s bright yellow or yellow-orange, you need to drink more water.[1]


[Edit]Is it OK to drink a gallon of water a day?

  1. Yes, but you don’t need that much water to stay hydrated. A single gallon (3.8 L) is a lot of water—128 oz or 16 cups, in fact! On average, healthcare professionals recommend that women drink 11.5 cups (2.7 L or 92 oz) of water per day, and men drink 15.5 cups (3.7 L or 124 oz).[2] While there’s nothing officially wrong with drinking 1 gallon (3.8 L) of water in 1 day, your body probably doesn’t need that much to stay hydrated.[3]
    Drink a Gallon of Water a Day Step 1.jpg
    • Some medical professionals even suggest aiming for 64 oz (1.9 L) of water a day, which is far less than the 1 gallon (3.8 L) threshold.
    • Everyone’s hydration needs are a little bit different—it depends on multiple factors, like your weight, location, and metabolism. For instance, someone who goes for an hour-long run would likely need more water than someone who doesn’t exercise.[4]

[Edit]Tips for Drinking a Gallon of Water a Day

  1. Drink water at different points throughout the day. Brushing your teeth? Heading to the bathroom? Stretching your legs? Try drinking an 8 oz (0.2 L) glass of water whenever you do something significant in your routine.[5] You can even drink a glass of water when you first wake up to help get the ball rolling.[6][7]
    Drink a Gallon of Water a Day Step 2 Version 2.jpg
    • Let’s say you drink an 8 oz (0.2 L) glass of water when you wake up, brush your teeth, go the bathroom, eat lunch, stretch your legs, go to the bathroom again, eat dinner, and brush your teeth again. By drinking water with each of these simple tasks, you’ve already reached 50% of your 1 gallon (3.8 L) goal!
    • According to some research, drinking water before meals helps you to eat less, which can potentially help with weight loss.[8]
  2. Bring a reusable water bottle with you whenever you leave your home. Heading off to school or work? A reusable water bottle lets you drink more water throughout the day.[9] Refill your water bottle as needed until you reach your daily hydration goal.
    Drink a Gallon of Water a Day Step 3.jpg
    • Want to cover more ground when you’re on the go? Fill up a gallon-sized bottle before you head out. It’ll take a bit longer to finish drinking, but once you do finish, you’ll have met your goal!
  3. Infuse your water with fruit to make it more appealing. Stick a few pieces of frozen fruit in your water bottle; not only will they keep your drink cold, but they’ll also add a delicious, fruity flavor to your drink. Feel free to stick fresh slices of citrus, cucumber, berries, and other chopped-up fruit into your water bottle or pitcher the night before to give your drink an infusion of refreshing flavor.[10] Here are a few combos you might try:
    Drink a Gallon of Water a Day Step 4.jpg
    • Cucumber, lime, and cilantro
    • Orange and blueberry
    • Grapefruit and rosemary
    • Mango and ginger
    • Strawberry, lemon, and basil[11]
  4. Eat fluid-rich fruits and veggies. Believe it or not, produce like cucumbers, tomatoes, celery, and asparagus are all at least 90% water. Add some of these fresh options to your meals and snacks as an easy way to get closer to your 1 gallon (3.8 L) hydration goal.[12]
    Drink a Gallon of Water a Day Step 5.jpg
    • 1 cup (119 g) of cucumbers is equal to 3.5 oz (99 mL) of water
    • 1 cup (240 g) of cooked tomatoes is equal to 6 oz (170.1 mL) of water
    • 1 cup (127 g) of celery is equal to 3.4 oz (96.4 mL) of water
    • 1 cup (134 g) of asparagus is equal to 4.4 oz (124.9 mL) of water[13]
    • Tip: The average person gets around 20% of their daily fluids via the foods they eat.[14] By being extra aware of the water content in your food, you can increase this percentage for yourself as you approach your 1 gallon (3.7 L) goal.
  5. Stay on track with your goals using technology. Set periodic reminders on your phone that remind you to get up and drink a glass of water—little by little, they can help you chip away at your goal.[15][16] For more personalized tracking options, download a water tracking app like Waterminder (iOS and Google Play), Plant Nanny² Water Tracker Log (iOS and Google Play) and Water Reminder - Daily Tracker (iOS and Google Play).
    Drink a Gallon of Water a Day Step 6.jpg
  6. Alternate water with unsweetened drinks like tea and coffee. Tired of regular water? Switch things up with glasses of black coffee, unsweetened tea, seltzer water, and fat-free or low-fat milk.[17]
    Drink a Gallon of Water a Day Step 7.jpg
    • While sweetened drinks aren’t completely off-limits, try to drink them sparingly—they’re often filled with calories, which isn’t ideal when you’re aiming for a 1 gallon (3.7 L) hydration goal.
  7. Compete with your friends for extra motivation. Maybe your friends also want to get in on the challenge, or you’re all just looking for more ways to drink some water. A friendly competition can help you all meet your hydration goals—simply track how much water you drink throughout the day or week and compare your results with your friends at the end.[18]
    Drink a Gallon of Water a Day Step 8.jpg
    • A phone app might make it a little easier to track your water intake.

[Edit]Recommended Water Intake

  1. Your water intake baseline (in ounces) is your weight (in pounds) multiplied by 0.5. Let’s say that you weigh 125 lbs (56.7 kg); when multiplied by 0.5, you get 62.5 oz (1.8 L), which is the bare minimum amount of water you should drink each day.[19]
    Drink a Gallon of Water a Day Step 9.jpg
    • Similarly, a person who weighs 220 lbs (100 kg) would need to drink a minimum of 110 oz (3.25 L) each day.
  2. Drink an extra 12 oz (0.35 L) of water for every 30 minutes you exercise. Let’s say that you weigh 125 lbs (56.7 kg) and are about to work out for 1 hour. Besides your 62.5 oz (1.8 L) baseline, you’ll have to drink an extra 24 oz (0.7 L) of water, which brings your daily recommended intake to 86.5 oz (2.5 L).[20]
    Drink a Gallon of Water a Day Step 10.jpg
    • If a person weighing 220 lbs (100 kg) exercised for 30 minutes, they’d need to drink almost a gallon of water that day (122 oz/3.6 L).
    • Pro tip: Each person’s body is different and has unique hydration requirements—your location and medical history can also play a role in how much water you need. Check with your doctor to ensure you’re drinking the right amount of water daily.[21]

[Edit]Signs That You’re Hydrated

  1. You almost never feel thirsty. If you seldom feel thirsty on a day-to-day basis, it’s pretty safe to assume that you’re drinking enough water and eating enough fluids to stay hydrated.[22] Just keep in mind that thirst alone isn’t the most accurate to keep tabs on your hydration since you can feel quenched while still being dehydrated.[23]
    Drink a Gallon of Water a Day Step 11.jpg
  2. Your urine is a clear to light yellow color. After you go to the bathroom, take a peek inside the toilet bowl and see what hue your urine is. If it’s clear, tinged yellow, or a light yellow color, you’re hydrated. If your pee is bright yellow or yellow-orange, you need to drink more water.[24][25]
    Drink a Gallon of Water a Day Step 12.jpg

[Edit]Why is it important to drink enough water?

  1. Hydration helps your body operate at max efficiency. Not only does it regulate your body temperature, but it also insulates your joints and cushions your spine.[26] Healthy hydration also keeps you from developing UTIs and headaches, along with:[27]
    Drink a Gallon of Water a Day Step 13.jpg
    • Constipation
    • Kidney stones
    • Dizziness and confusion
    • Pressure ulcers

[Edit]Key Takeaways

  1. Increase your water intake by making a few key lifestyle changes. Changing up your routine, adding natural flavors to your water, and sipping on a variety of unsweetened beverages can make your hydration goals seem much more attainable. If you’re looking for a little extra motivation, try competing with your friends and/or using a digital reminder/tracking system to help you stay focused.[28]
    Drink a Gallon of Water a Day Step 14.jpg
  2. Prioritize hydration over drinking exactly 1 gallon (3.8 L) of water per day. Many people don’t need to drink a full gallon (3.8 L) of water to be completely hydrated. If you aren’t comfortable drinking such a huge amount of water in 1 day (or simply don’t need that much), stick with a more manageable goal like 64 oz (1.9 L).[29]
    Drink a Gallon of Water a Day Step 15.jpg


  • As you increase your daily hydration goals, you might find yourself going to the bathroom a lot. Don’t worry—this is completely normal. Your bladder will slowly get bigger as you continue to drink lots of water, and eventually, you won’t have to run to the restroom as much.[30]
  • If you’re pregnant or nursing, it’s a good idea to drink an extra 24-32 oz (0.7-0.9L) of water each day. Talk with your doctor to get a more exact idea of how much water you need to stay hydrated.[31]


  • Space out your drinks throughout the day instead of drinking huge amounts of water (like 200-300 oz/5.9-8.9 L) at once. Drinking a lot of water in a short period of time can cause hyponatremia, a life-threatening condition.[32]
  • Don’t try the gallon water challenge if you have a condition like end-stage kidney disease or congestive heart failure (where your body isn’t able to process water as well).[33]


  1. [v162295_b01]. 10 January 2023.
  6. [v162295_b01]. 10 January 2023.
  16. [v162295_b01]. 10 January 2023.
  25. [v162295_b01]. 10 January 2023.

Powered by Drupal - Design by artinet