Lactobacillus helveticus VFH45 presents a remarkable proteolytic activity over a variety of protein substrates. Hydrolysis of milk casein by L. helveticus VFH45 leads to the release of peptides with a capacity to inhibit angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE), which is involved in several physiological processes, including regulation of blood pressure. L. helveticus VFH45 can be used for production of functional dairy products targeting the cardiovascular and metabolic markets.