Can't they make a holo-replicator? That way, it would use "holodeck energy" but create real stuff. When they eat in the holodeck, are they eating holo-food or "real" replicated food?
I've watched all but the last 3 episodes of S1, and in one trip to the holodeck, Harry is worried about drinking late at night, and Tom says something like "it's Holo-alcohol", so, yea, I think it just gives you the impression you are eating or driniking, but, no substance.
One Day I hope to be the Man my Cat thinks I am
Where are we going? And why are we in this Handbasket?