Robin! How dare you post in some ancient comment thread! I almost missed your crazed diatribe and let it stand unchallenged. Let me TRY to deal with the worst of your atrocious misstatements.
"Powdered milk is not as evil as Om Nom thinks it is, but it does not compare to regular milk unless put in baked goods or disguised in hot chocolate."
Powdered milk isn't "evil," it's merely revolting. It is not possible to disguise it--well, I guess you could bake with it probably. I never tried. It is the only problem with milk chocolate as most mortals know it: you can taste the sour powdered milk. I now know from reading Candy Freak that it's possible to get candybars made without it, but you have to spend like $46/bar.
"You see, food and its tastes are all a matter of two main things: how open-minded you are to new tastes and what you are used to, taste-wise."
If this were true, we would all prefer powdered milk hot chocolate, because we all grew up on Swiss Miss. In fact, food and its tastes are a matter of one thing: whether you have the sense enough to know what's good when you run up on it.
"Several years ago, I decided on to 'eat to live,' not to 'live to eat.'"
"Eating to live entails figuring out the bare minimum of foods you like and can live with, both money-wise and nutrition-wise."
Then swiftly loading up your trusty handgun and dispatching yourself because if you're eating to live you got no reason to live.
"...Can humans manufacture the vitamins they need from the foods they eat and the sunlight they receive (vitamin D is manufactured by the body due to sunlight expose amounts)? Children who lived in Swiss valleys tended to get rickets much more frequently than those who lived higher up on the mountains. The children in the valleys were vitamin D deficient. So the answer to the question of whether humans can manufacture most of the vitamins they need is 'Mostly, yes, they can, but not entirely.'"
No, given the evidence you provide, "mostly but not entirely" is not the answer to the question you asked. Rather, it's the answer to the question, "can juvenile Swiss valley-dwellers manufacture all the vitamin D they need?" Mostly (they ain't dead), but not entirely (they all done come down with the rickets). About no other nutrient can we tell a gatdamn thing from your example. I must tell you that Juan Valdez concurs with me: he has a mean headache right now despite the fact that he gets plenty of sun. He has been unable to manufacture the vital nutrient, caffeine, and he doesn't get it from his diet since I put him on Postum instead of coffee. (Sue me! I was tired of listening to him crack his knuckles early in the morning.)
"I decided to try to buy as little as possible at the grocery store as I could."
"The rub? I don't really like to cook all that much."
Ay. There is the rub. Learn, yo.
"I am more of an information guy. Ideas are like food to me."
I wonder if the rickety Swiss kids could manufacture vitamin D... from ideas? (You're supposed to read "from ideas" the way George W. reads "from Africa" in that little speech he gave that time about the yellow cake.)
"If a kid grows up only drinking powdered milk (I did not), he is going find regular milk to be a greasy, odd beverage that takes some getting used to."
Wait up because here's another of those ideas for Heidi et al to munch on: what if all milk is revolting? Yes, Pippi! Think on't long and build strong bones the better to ride Mister Nilsson (or was that the name of the monkey? Hell, I can't remember Pippi for beans). Milk sucks. Milk sucks, and that's not just an "idea," it's an obvious fact. Milk sucks. Cream is okay. Whey is bearable. But milk sucks except when it's straight out of the cow. And I know this because my parents tried to get me to like regular milk and they tried to get me to like powdered milk and they made me try chocolate milk and they made me try milks of all butterfat percentages and I hated it all. I did not like anything dairy except yogurt and ice cream and whipped cream and cheese and, of course, glorious butter. I hated milk categorically 'til I tried it fresh-out-of-the-udder, when I loved it, but you can't get it that way in this godforsaken country unless you own a cow, so I maintain that for all practical purposes, milk sucks. O, I drank it when they told me to: one eats what is put in front of one. I ate to live in those days because I had no choice. Now that I have a choice, I live to eat, and I don't drink milk... because it sucks. All those "eat to live" years I drank the stuff, I always knew that it sucked.
"The opposite food plan, 'living to eat' ...says that tasting is one of the most important things a person does. But is it?"
"I find this approach to life to be a materialistic one."
No, it isn't. It's merely sensible. The opposite approach is a self-loathing one. Why would you put something that sucks in your mouth unless somebody bigger than you was making you?
"It is also very expensive to eat that way."
Quite, quite the opposite. Living to eat is far cheaper than eating to live. Take butter, for just one instance. Butter is astronomically better tasting and mouthfeeling and all that than margarine. Margarine's one true advantage over butter is price. My lifelong dedication to butter saved my circulatory system. Now my blood flows free, unobstructed by petrified Country Crock. I don't need a coronary bypass. I save the big money.