Gladys Portugues

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Gladys Portugues (born September 30, 1957) is an American former professional female bodybuilder and actress. As a bodybuilder, she twice placed in the top 10 in the Ms. Olympia contest. Her husband is Belgian actor and martial artist Jean-Claude van Damme.

Personal life[edit]

Portugues has said that she was inspired to start her own bodybuilding and weight training regimen while attending Marymount Manhattan College, when she saw Rachel McLish on television winning the Ms. Olympia title. In 1987, at the age of thirty, Portugues married Belgian martial artist and actor Jean-Claude van Damme. The couple divorced in 1992, but remarried in 1999. On March 18, 2015 Portugues filed for divorce from her husband for the second time, but canceled this filing one week later.[1] They have two children: Kristopher van Varenberg (born 1987) and Bianca Brigitte (born 1990).[2]


Year Title Role Notes
1985 Pumping Iron II: The Women Herself Cinecom International Films
1986 The Morning After Bodybuilder 20th Century Fox
1987 It's Alive III: Island of the Alive Waitress Larco Productions Inc.


Year Title Episodes Role
2011 Behind Closed Doors 1 season (8 episodes) Herself


  • Hard Bodies Express, Portugues, Dell; Reissue 1988, ISBN 0-440-53426-7
  • Hard Bodies, Portugues and Vedral, Dell; Reissue edition 1986, ISBN 0-440-53424-0


External links[edit]