But the book also reinforced his tendency to embrace extreme diets, which included purges, fasts, or eating only one or two foods, such as carrots or apples, for weeks on end.
Jobs and Kottke became serious vegetarians during their freshman year.
"Steve got into it even more than I did," said Kottke. "He was living off Roman Meal cereal."
They would go shopping at a farmers' co-op, where Jobs would buy a box of cereal, which would last a week, and other bulk health food.
"He would buy flats of dates and almonds and lots of carrots, and he got a Champion juicer and we'd make carrot juice and carrot salads.
There is a story about Steve turning orange from eating so many carrots, and there is some truth to that."
Friends remember him having, at times, a sunset-like orange hue.
Jobs's dietary habits became even more obsessive when he read Mucusless Diet Healing System by Arnold Ehret, an early twentieth-century German-born nutrition fanatic.
He believed in eating nothing but fruits and starchless vegetables, which he said prevented the body from forming harmful mucus, and he advocated cleansing the body regularly through prolonged fasts.
That meant the end of even Roman Meal cereal—or any bread, grains, or milk.
Jobs began warning friends of the mucus dangers lurking in their bagels.
"I got into it in my typical nutso way," he said.
At one point he and Kottke went for an entire week eating only apples, and then Jobs began to try even purer fasts.
He started with two-day fasts, and eventually tried to stretch them to a week or more, breaking them carefully with large amounts of water and leafy vegetables.
"After a week you start to feel fantastic," he said.
"You get a ton of vitality from not having to digest all this food. I was in great shape. I felt I could get up and walk to San Francisco anytime I wanted."
Vegetarianism and Zen Buddhism, meditation and spirituality, acid and rock—Jobs rolled together, in an amped-up way, the multiple impulses that were hallmarks of the enlightenment- seeking campus subculture of the era.
And even though he barely indulged it at Reed, there was still an undercurrent of electronic geekiness in his soul that would someday combine surprisingly well with the rest of the mix.