Eric Muhammad went from sweeping hair at the age of 15 in a local barbershop, and working at United Airlines to becoming a successful Black business owner of A New You Barber and Beauty Salon.
Today, he is the proud owner of the salon he started 17 years ago, and a proud member of a barbershop health initiative fighting to reduce high blood pressure in African American men.
At A New You Barber and Beauty Salon, clients can receive a haircut and a high blood pressure test.
The barbershop-based hypertension program which began in February 2015 by Cedar Sinai Hospital’s very own Dr.
Ronald Victor, focuses on reducing blood pressure in Black men between the ages of 39 to 75.
“The program pairs a client with a barber, doctor and pharmacist. With monitoring by the barber, doctor and pharmacist, together we all come together to help he patient get their blood pressure down,” said Muhammad.
The in-shop machine allows Muhammad’s clients to receive a blood pressure test on a weekly basis.
Prior to giving his clients a blood pressure test, Muhammad had to go through training.
“They teach us how to take and measure the blood pressure by using an automated machine. All you have to do is put the cuff on, start the machine and the machine does the rest of the work,” said Muhammad.
Since the business owner has been a part of the program, he has seen his client’s blood pressure go down. The benefit, longer lives for his clients.
“I think this is important to have in the Black community and hopefully we are able to have it in every barbershop in America,” said Muhammad.
“Black men are not going to the doctor like they should but, they are still going to the barbershop. So in conjunction with the doctor and the barbershop, this is bringing doctors to where people are which is in the barbershop, an effective approach to helping Black men who are at the highest risk of having high blood pressure get their blood pressure down.”
Muhammad advises young Black men who are interested in becoming business owners to, “just do it.”
“If you have the vision to do and you have the desire to do it, and you work hard, you can get it done,” said Muhammad.
A New You Barber and Beauty Salon is located on 205 N. La Brea Avenue Inglewood, CA 90301 and open seven days a week from 7am to 7pm. For more information on the Cedar Sinai health initiative, call (310) -562-2640.